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India vs Zimbabwe 2016: Sanjay Bangar says pressure is on the youngsters to deliver

Ram Kumar
761   //    17 Jun 2016, 23:15 IST
KL Rahul
KL Rahul had a fruitful foray into limited-overs cricket with 196 runs from 3 ODIs

Anticipating that the trip to Zimbabwe would provide a perfect platform to initiate youngsters into international cricket, the Indian selectors opted to try out untested players for the limited-overs series.

What followed was a completely one-sided affair with India steamrollering a woeful Zimbabwe outfit in the ODI leg. However, interim coach Sanjay Bangar still feels that there is considerable pressure on the younger cricketers to deliver.

Speaking to reporters on the eve of the 1st T20I in Harare, Bangar exuded confidence that the tour would serve as a springboard into the future of Indian cricket. Having been unchallenged so far, he also believed that the players were ready to switch to the shortest format after a hectic IPL season.

Bangar asserted, “I believe there's enough pressure on the youngsters to deliver. At the back of the mind they know that if they don't do well in this series, it actually puts a question mark. There's a lot to lose and a lot to gain for the younger players from an opportunity to come and play.”

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He added, “It provides an ideal opportunity for our younger players to test international waters. Gives them the experience of finding their feet in international cricket. The confidence they derive from doing well in these games augurs really well for us and for the future of Indian cricket.”

While KL Rahul topped the batting charts in the ODI series by maintaining his impressive form from the IPL, leg-spinner and Royal Challengers Bangalore team-mate Yuzvendra Chahal had a promising entrance into the international arena.

The 43-year old affirmed, “We're hoping to match our own expectations when it comes to T20. We're coming on the back of an IPL so that should hold us in good stead when we play this format.”

Though the hosts are reeling from continuous losses, he braced for a possible counter punch. The former all-rounder quipped, “We would want to play to our potential. We are expecting and anticipate Zimbabwe to come out and be competitive in each and every game that we play.”

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Ram Kumar
Someone who views sport as a metaphor for life.
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