Australia vs India 2018-19: Why India's loss in the 1st T20I is a blessing in disguise for the visitors
India lost to Australia in the first T20 via the Duckworth-Lewis method, in rather unconventional fashion. Even though India scored more runs than the home side, they lost the match by a margin of 4 runs.
Indian fans and spectators all over the world are understandably quite unhappy about the outcome of the match. However, in my viewpoint, this loss is a moral victory for India, and will benefit them more than Australia in the upcoming matches.
The loss yesterday has given the visiting side the chance to ponder a couple of things. Firstly, Khaleel Ahmed's place in the side needs to be scrutinized. His inexperience in these kind of conditions has become evident.
Even though he took a wicket off his first ball, he later conceded 42 runs in 17 deliveries. Clearly, this wasn't his best performance, and he needs to adjust his line and length better. He is the future of Indian bowling, and needs to improve a lot.
Also, questions have been raised about Virat Kohli's idea to make Krunal Pandya bowl four complete overs. Pandya was extremely expensive and went wicket-less in his spell. His inclusion in the side, over his brother Hardik, was not well received by many cricket analysts.
If the Indian cricket team has long term goals for Krunal, he certainly needs to be groomed properly. Moreover, he should continue to be utilized fully in the remaining matches of the series.
There were several hiccups in the batting line-up as well. KL Rahul's inconsistent performances over the last couple of matches have given enough reasons for the management to consider Manish Pandey over him. Pandey has a good record against the Australian team, and could be an asset to the team if utilized properly.
The two wicket-keepers also need to work hard to become the perfect replacement for MS Dhoni. Both Pant and Karthik have to try and be equally competent behind the wickets and also with the bat. Pant failed to finish the game, and Karthik got out with a poor shot selection.
The Indian team have the chance to do some introspection - more out of necessity than choice. But given the kind of talent they possess, this is a good thing; with a bit of fine-tuning, they can easily make a strong comeback in the series.
That said, the players need to keep in mind that they are under constant supervision, as the T20 World Cup is just around the corner. They all need to give more than their 100 percent in order to be a part of the squad which can lift the trophy next year in England.