India need an Eoin Morgan-type character to go in there and say play carefree cricket: Nasser Hussain

When it comes to knockout games, the approach needs to be changed by the Indian team, reckoned Nasser Hussain.

Nasser Hussain
Nasser Hussain(Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
Chaitanya Prakash

Jr. Staff Writer

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India's think tank has got plenty to ponder after another dismal showing in an ICC event by the Men in Blue. While question marks have been raised about Rohit Sharma's leadership capabilities in the aftermath of the T20 World Cup, former England skipper Nasser Hussain pinned down the problem to the players' mindset rather than the personnel.

Rohit Sharma's India were knocked out at the semi-final stage of the recently concluded T20 World Cup in Australia after a harrowing loss against the eventual champions England. Ex-English cricketer Nasser Hussain feels that it was India's mentality that cost them the game against England. He feels that India needs a figure like Eoin Morgan, who will allow the players to express themselves on the pitch, playing carefree cricket irrespective of the criticism. He reckoned that the players need to afforded the same freedom at the international level that they are handed in the IPL.

“There's talk about younger guns coming through but it's not the players, but the mindset. They need an Eoin Morgan-type character to go in there and say play carefree cricket. 20 overs, go and smash it as much as you can for 20 overs. Play like you play in the IPL and smash it. Do it for India and don't worry about the noise. Shut out the noise and we'll back if you are bowled out for 120,” Hussain said in a chat with Michael Atherton on Sky Sports Cricket.

The first time they got that into a knockout game, they slipped back into their old way: Hussain

The former skipper highlighted that the Indian team, under the new regime of Rahul Dravid, played fearless cricket in bilateral series, but once the stakes got higher in the semi-final against England, they reverted to their timid self. The Englishman reckoned that the Asian giants should adopt the attacking brand of cricket in ICC events as well.

"I had even asked Ravi Shastri, he said ‘we played pretty timid cricket' with the bat and that's got to change. Rohit Sharma and Rahul Dravid came to change that, and they did it in bilaterals, they did it against England. Suryakumar Yadav smashed it around Trent Bridge. But then, you've got to take it into a game, where you know that you know that if you lose, the sort of criticism you are going to get. The first time that got that into a knockout game, they slipped back into their old way of being 66 for 2 after 10," he added.