India last won an ICC tournament in 2013 under MS Dhoni. Under him, India was a force to be reckoned with. An opposition which most of the teams in the world would fear. And then after him, it was time for the charismatic and aggressive Virat Kohli to take over the reins. Even though India did not win any huge championships under his command, India still managed to win most of the series they played in, and stayed the no 1 Test & T20 side in the world for a long time. Team India won a series in England, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. Things which never happened before started to happen.
And then came the big hurricane that just turned and twisted everything in its path. Virat Kohli resigned from T20 Captaincy and later on, Rohit Sharma was made the captain of ODIs and Tests as well. There was a lot of controversy in the media regarding the whole thing and there are still rumours about the rift between the two (even though it seems highly unlikely considering how these two back each other during bad times).
But India has become a side which is good on paper, great in many bilateral series’ but not anywhere in the picture when it comes to playing aggressive and championship-winning cricket. India lost in the semis of the World Cup against England. And now they have lost an ODI series against Bangladesh. Things that never happened are still happening now but not in the way most fans would hope for.
Has the quality of cricket dwindled under Rohit Sharma? Maybe, it seems like it. Even though when he first took over the reins, India won some crazy games back to back in T20s creating records left right and centre but to be fair most of those wins were against weaker sides. And whenever team India has played against the bigger nations, they have always come up a little short, especially in must-win games and ICC tournaments.
One of the reasons that can also be talked about is the amount of changes coach Rahul Dravid and captain Rohit Sharma are making to the side in every series. Yes, India has a very big pool of talented cricketers who can take the centre stage at any time but a team needs structure, a style and a balance of play that comes after playing a lot of matches together. Has India lost that in the process of trying too many players?
Team India will be looking to make sure that they look at all the gaps and fill those gaps with the players that are best suited for such roles. With the 50 Over World Cup just a year away and that too in India, team India will be under massive pressure to perform and lift the trophy.
Do you think captain Rohit Sharma and this Indian team have what it takes to lift the trophy?