After losing against Bangladesh 2-1 in a recently concluded three-match ODI series, Team India is all set to face Sri Lanka in the 50-over format again, starting from January 10. The likes of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, who were rested in the ongoing T20Is against Sri Lanka, will be featuring in the ODI series, having not participated in the preceding T20Is. In order to prepare for the upcoming ODI World Cup on home soil later this year, the Rohit Sharma-led side will be playing a total of 35 ODI matches in 2023. Despite having a disappointing end in the 2022 T20 World Cup, Team India had some positives to take like Virat Kohli’s massive comeback. The star batter, who was going through a lean patch, became the highest run-scorer of the tournament with a total of 296 runs in 6 matches.
As the teams are gearing up for the 2023 ODI World Cup, former India batter Krishnamachari Srikkanth stated that Virat Kohli will be playing the role of an “anchor” and will help youngsters like Ishan Kishan to excel in the team.
“What role clarity do we need to give them? Look at Ishan Kishan for example, how he hits the ball, he has even scored a double century recently. Just tell these players to go out there and play your game, don’t restrict them. Just like Ishan Kishan, you need two or three more players who aren’t afraid to express themselves, that’s number one. All-rounders, batting all-rounders, bowling all-rounders are required in this line-up,” Srikkanth told Star Sports.
“There should be a combination of these players in the team. And what about ODI cricket? Just like Gautam Gambhir has played a major role of anchor in the past, the same way Virat Kohli will play that role this time around. He will help players like Ishan Kishan excel just as he got a century when Kishan got a double century. It’s all about freedom, giving your players the freedom, do what you want, play your game even if you get out, that’s the approach the team should have,” he added.
In the third and final ODI match against Bangladesh in December, Ishan Kishan struck a double century in just 126 balls, the fastest in ODI history. Team India went on to post a total of 409/8 in 50 overs and eventually won the game by 227 runs.
Talking about the ongoing T20Is against Sri Lanka, Team India won the first match by 2 runs but ended up losing the second match by 16 runs after failing to chase down the target of 207. The third and final T20I match will be held on Saturday in Rajkot. In the absence of Rohit Sharma, all-rounder Hardik Pandya has been leading Team India in the T20I series.
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