How is India preparing for the 2023 World Cup?


January 17, 2023

A 3-0 ODI series win means Rohit Sharma’s India have now won five of their six ODI series in charge. He also has a win rate of 76. And a record win of 317 heats is a great way to start your preparation for an ICC World Cup on home soil.

So, what areas does India want to improve on before the tournament begins in October?

Better use of Powerplay

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In the past, India has been criticized for not making better use of the first 10 overs. In this series, however, it was good to see the captain, and particularly Shubman Gill, taking advantage of field restrictions.

75-0, 51-1 and 75-0 are really good starts regardless of the competition. There may be a few games where you could be 60-3, but it’s really important that they keep trying to play hard on the first power play to take the pressure off the rest of the batters.

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As for bowling, Mohammed Siraj seems to have done a good job of filling in Jasprit Bumrah’s footsteps.

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33 wickets from 19 ODIs at an economy of 4.73 is a decent stat. Even more impressive is that he knows what he wants to bowl, and more often than not he executes it. And when you have someone as experienced as Mohammed Shami on the other end, it gives you the confidence to implement your bowling skills and plans because you can learn from the seasoned pro. On the power play it’s so important for your new ball bowlers to set the tone for the innings by taking early wickets and that’s what these two pacesetters are doing, long may it continue.

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Speaking of India’s speedster veteran, it’s not yet known when he will return, but he’s still out with a back injury.

Middle order puzzle?

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Another thing for India to think about is in 4th and 5th place, Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav seem like the ideal candidates as they can hit high pace runs in all areas of the floor.

Iyer and Yadav have strike rates of 96.50 and 100.51, which is exactly what you need in the middle overs.

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The other problem is KL Rahul, who is in the squad in place of Rishabh Pant, who is still recovering from his traffic accident that occurred in Haridwar, India on December 22nd. Rahul has been a little inconsistent with his form in ODI cricket. He is expected to miss the New Zealand Series due to family commitments, giving KS Bharat and Ishan Kishan an opportunity to claim a place in the World Cup squad.

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Kishan has 477 runs in just ten ODIs at a rate of 111.97 and is a left-handed batsman, which could be ideal if India want a left-right hand combination in middle order.

The 24-year-old is an aggressive hitter who likes to hit fast and likes to use boundaries.

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He also became the seventh player to have a double century in an ODI inning, equaling Fakhar Zaman’s (PAK) highest score of 210.

But then the problem with Kishan is that he can be vulnerable to short balls at times, but he is a highly talented hitter who deserves more chances in the future.

King Kohli is back

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Before the Asia Cup in 2i022, India’s star batsman had gone almost three years without scoring in a century. But he hasn’t looked back since the Aisa Cup in September 2022.

Kohli also had the highest run scorer at the ICC T20 World Cup, held in November. The 34-year-old totaled 296 runs for a 98.66 average, with four half-centuries, with the highest score of 82 not coming against arch-rivals Pakistan.

With 46 ODI centuries, the former Indian skipper is just three centuries away from matching Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 49 centuries. Given his current superior form you can clearly see him getting close to the record but cricket is a fun game at times so all India fans will hope he surpasses him sooner rather than later unlike Tendulkar who had to wait a full year to reach its 100th international century. Kohli also has 27 test centuries.

In the third ODI against Sri Lanka in 2012 he went unbeaten 166 against Pakistan which is his fifth result of 150+ with his highest unbeaten result being 183. India hopes its good form continues to lead to the World Cup.

Next up for India is a three-game ODI series against New Zealand, starting tomorrow in Hyderabad.

India has named a 16-man squad for the series:

Rohit Sharma (Captain), Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan (wk), Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, KS Bharat (wk), Hardik Pandya (Vice Captain), Washington Sundar, Shahbaz Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav , mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, Umran Malik.

It will be interesting to see what combinations Sharma makes in terms of his playing XI for all three games.

Is this the first step on the road to World Cup glory for Team India?

Find out by staying up to date with World In Sport.

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