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Michael Clarke concerned with India’s constant experiments ahead of the World Cup

"I don't think there's anything wrong about being the favourites."

Michael Clarke
Michael Clarke. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

With India showing no signs of stopping with their experiments ahead of the ICC World Cup, former Australia skipper Michael Clarke has said he is a bit concerned. India are all set to take on Australia in a five-match ODI series which will be their last international assignment before the showpiece event in England and Wales. And it is safe to say that India have yet not decided on their final lineup.

Dinesh Karthik’s case very much proves this fact. From the last one year or so, India had groomed Karthik as the finisher in the team. Karthik, on his part, had done reasonably well too. However, the selectors dropped a huge surprise by axing Karthik for the upcoming series. Instead, they picked Rishabh Pant in the team who has played just three ODIs so far and is yet to make a mark in white-ball cricket.

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There are also question marks over who would be the fourth seamer after the team dropped Khaleel Ahmed while the number four spot keeps on making one speculate. In fact, all-format skipper Virat Kohli recently raised the speculations that he might bat at number four if the situation demands. Recently, India had left out their go-to spinner Kuldeep Yadav from the T20I squad for the series against Australia and also rotated their openers, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma. With so many ifs and buts as far as the team combination is concerned, time is running out for the Men in Blue.

Unsurprisingly, Clarke, who led Australia to the World Cup title in 2015, opined that India are not ‘too concerned’ about winning or losing at the moment. “My only concern with India’s approach in the first two T20s against Australia and in the current series is that they are not too concerned about winning or losing those games.”

“Listening to Virat talking after the last T20, these ODIs their approach is going to be the same, they are going to try a few players whom they are going to take in the 15 to the World Cup. That would be a little bit different from my approach. My attitude leading up to the World Cup was trying and winning every game to get the momentum and get confidence into our group,” Clarke told India Today.

Nothing wrong with favourite tag:

India are one of the firm favourites to win the title in England. However, many feel that the team could buckle under the pressure of being the favourites. But Clarke, who definitely knows a thing or two about winning the World Cup, thinks otherwise. He feels that the favourite tag should add to the confidence of top teams at the World Cup.

“I don’t think there’s anything wrong about being the favourites, it’s all about the attitude. I think back in 2007 when Australia won the World Cup in the Caribbean, we were the favourites, we didn’t lose a single game and went on to win the World Cup. The tag of the favourites perhaps enhanced the way we wanted to play, like favourites. Yes we had so much of experience in that team and that perhaps made it easier as well,” Clarke said.

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