'Such big names but you cannot even score 200 in two innings' - Kapil Dev lambastes Indian batsmen for their performance

‘Such big names but you cannot even score 200 in two innings’ – Kapil Dev lambastes Indian batsmen for their performance

The much-famed Indian batting line-up failed to cope with the swing bowling of Kiwi seamers.

Kapil Dev
Kapil Dev. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

India were handed a hefty ten-wicket defeat by New Zealand in the first test match of the series at Wellington’s Basin Reserve. They suffered their first defeat in the ICC Test Championship and also their fourth defeat in a row (whitewashed 3-0 in the ODIs). Following the defeat, former Indian skipper Kapil Dev has criticised Indian team management for making frequent changes to the playing eleven.

India were handed a big blow midway through the ODI series as star batsman Rohit Sharma was ruled out due to an injury. Shikhar Dhawan is also recovering from his injury and was not included in the Test squad. This prompted a young Prithvi Shaw to open the batting in absence of regular openers. Virat Kohli and the team management also opted to give Rishabh Pant a chance behind the stumps in place regular test keeper Wriddhiman Saha.

It is this chopping and changing in the team that raised questions in the mind of the legendary all-rounder. He said as quoted by India Today– “We have to praise New Zealand, they are playing very good cricket. The three ODIs and this Test match, they have been excellent. If we analyse this match critically, well, I do not understand how one can make so many changes. There is a new team in almost every match. No one in the team is permanent, if there is no security over your place, it will affect the form of the players.”

“Such big names in the batting order, if you cannot score even 200 runs in 2 innings, you have not been able to conquer conditions. You have to focus more on planning and strategy,” Dev added.

Indian batting force bowed down against the Kiwi pace battery

The much-famed Indian batting line-up failed to cope with the swing bowling of Kiwi seamers. Experienced players and proven match-winners such as Cheteshwar Pujara, skipper Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane, failed to make it big in both innings. Their inability can be identified as one of the main reasons behind India’s batting collapse in both innings.

The ‘Haryana Hurricane’ also highlighted the same issue, as he felt more focus should be given in terms of making strategies. One surprise exclusion from the squad was in-form KL Rahul. The Karnataka batsman’s omission from the squad raised some eyebrows and former India skipper also pointed towards this.

“I do not understand. There is a lot of difference between when we played and what is happening now. When you build a team, you have to give confidence to players. When there are so many changes made, it does not make sense. Management believes in format-specific players. Rahul is in great form, he is sitting out, it does not make sense. I believe when a player is in form, he needs to play,” he added further.

The second test match is scheduled to take place on Christchurch from 29th February. It will be interesting to see whether or not Kohli and the team management make any changes to the squad. It is no secret that Virat Kohli and his troops struggled to play quality pace bowling, but just changing the team lineup might not be enough for them to make comeback in the second Test.

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