SYDNEY: India, who will take on the Netherlands here on Thursday looking for full points and a net run rate boost, are not in favour of resting key players for the game, according to their bowling coach.
TOI POLL: Should Team India do anything different against the Netherlands in the T20 WC?
The team management believes the core players need time out in the middle ahead of important games against South Africa and Bangladesh to follow. India’s schedule in the coming weeks is hectic, straddling different time zones every few days. If they make it to the semis, spending time in the middle in these low-pressure games could be useful.
“We are not going to rest anyone,” Mhambrey said. “When you have the momentum going in a tournament, you need individuals to be in form. Some haven’t got an opportunity to bat, so every game becomes important. We won’t be looking at resting anybody.”
India have had only one optional practice session following the game against Pakistan. The key pacers and allrounder Hardik Pandya haven’t trained at all.
“It was an optional practice session. That’s the reason they didn’t turn up. Just before the game we always leave it up to the bowlers, how much they want to work. You’ve got to take care of them. Every (training) session that we have left is an optional one. In terms of the maintenance, the physiotherapy, it’s important to have them in the best shape,” Mhambrey said.
‘HARDIK WANTS TO PLAY ALL THE GAMES’
On considerations to rest Hardik Pandya, who has a heavier all-round workload in T20Is and was seen cramping up in the game against Pakistan, Mhambrey said, “No, none. He’s all right. Hardik wants to play all the games. There is no such thought about any particular player. Hardik is a very important player for us. He adds a lot of balance. His attitude on the field is important. Rest is not even a discussion.”
Another key bowler making a comeback is Mohammed Shami, who took longer than usual to recover from Covid. “It started when he went to the NCA. We wanted to have a look at how he felt, what shape he was in. He put in the loads, the numbers there. We were happy about it.
“He is a very experienced and seasoned bowler. The first over he bowled in Australia, he looked in great rhythm.”
‘SURREAL TO PLAY AGAINST INDIA AT SCG’
This may be a tournament of upsets but Netherlands are not getting their hopes up. For now, playing against India at an iconic venue is special enough.
“It’s pretty surreal,” their captain Scott Edwards said. “You always dream of playing the World Cups, and SCG is one of the most famous grounds in the world. Then add in that you’re playing against one of the best teams in the world.
“We’re not trying to play how India would play or how Australia would play. We’re just trying to play our brand of cricket. Obviously these teams are hard to beat.”
It is the second of two games on the day at the SCG, so expect a slow pitch.
‘ARSHDEEP’S ABILITY TO HANDLE PRESSURE STANDS OUT’
On the exhilarating rise of left-arm seamer Arshdeep Singh, coach Paras Mhambrey said, “The one thing that really stands out with this kid is his ability to handle pressure. He does hard work in the IPL. He does two different phases: powerplay and death overs. The composure that he’s shown, the clarity of thought process he has shown. . . he’ll go through. I’ve seen him discussing a lot with Bhuvi and Shami.”