Do we need to reshuffle line-up ahead of World Cup

Written by: Nivedita Aluri
Published: Saturday, January 4, 2003, 17:20 [IST]
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Bangalore: After putting up some breath taking performances in the year 2002, the Indian team has left all its fans baffled with its recent poor performances at New Zealand.

The performances of Indians in New Zealand has not only puzzled its well wishers but also has lead to doubts about their chances in World Cup, which were riding quite high on their success before Kiwi tour.

The pitches were blamed to be the cause for their poor performances. Yes, the pitches were unpredictable, but they were the same pitches the Kiwis had to bat on.

What one cannot understand is why is it one cannot find any resistance from India's top order batsmen. What once looked like a formidable batting line-up has suddenly become very brittle.

Even the batting line-up is going through a major reshuffle just ahead of World Cup. Once again Indian batsmen are pushed forward as sacrificial goats as in the case of Dravid, who had to open the innings on Saturday. Does the Indian team need all this shuffling ahead of such a big tournament?

I, Myself being a staunch Indian supporter, fail to understand why Indian batsmen are blaming the pitches when one can easily notice that they are hardly applying themselves to fight out the situation.

Many a time one felt that the Indian batsmen just didn't commit enough to last long. Most of the times they lost the battle even before they fought it. It's definitely in their minds. Pitches are not to be blamed as Ganguly mentioned after India lost the fourth ODI and in the process also lost the ODI series.

Undoubtedly, Indian cricket team has let down its country, the fans and the well wishers. Indian fans are very emotional and can be very severe. Yet no one can question the ire of the fans this time as the show put up by the Indians in New Zealand deserves it.

Indians certainly have talent in abundance, but they have never done any justice to their talent. With world class batsmen in its batting order it's hard to understand how the team is fairing so terribly.

It's understandable that when the team goes abroad it takes a little time to adjust to the conditions there. In case of India in New Zealand it seems that the Indians are not making any attempt to adjust to the conditions and pitches.

With World Cup ahead, the Indians have to make up for the losses on this tour and pick up their game. They'll have to apply themselves and fight out in the middle to emerge winners in the remaining matches, which would do a world of good to their confidence ahead of the World Cup.

As emotional as any other Indian when it comes to cricket, all I can say is the Indian pride is at stake in the remaining three One-day ties and the Indian 'Super Stars' better fare better for the sake of their country and their die-hard fans.

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