- Cricket enjoys such popularity, following, adulation, and passion in India that it is considered no less than a religion here. Whenever there is an important contest involving India is scheduled, it is taken for granted that the country will almost come to a standstill. We have witnessed such frenzy during the crucial World Cup matches over the last couple of decades. Some of the renowned superstar cricketers are considered such high-profile celebrities that it is an unbelievable scenario to witness how crazy fans adore them. Few of the distinguished cricketers enjoy such reverence and admiration among the huge number of followers that it’s simply mind-blowing. None of the other sportspersons representing different disciplines enjoy such a cult status as cricketers.
PC: The Economic Times
- Since each cricket follower considers themselves no less than an expert in the field, everyone has an opinion or two about the nitty-gritty of the game including the selection of players for a particular series. This not only places tremendous pressure on the selection committee but also makes their job even tougher when selecting players. Such is the popularity of the game here that there is simply no dearth of quality players coming from even mofussil areas. The reach of the game is phenomenal and as such, more sponsors are willing to pump in enormous amounts of money. No wonder, the Indian Premier League T20 tournament has completely transformed the face of cricket in India raking in big money for the Board of Control of India.
- After the 50-over World Cup, a T20 World Cup is beckoning in June scheduled to be held in the West Indies and the USA. The preparations for the mega event have already started in earnest. One such endeavor is the three-match series against Afghanistan. Here, the selectors have thrown a surprise or two by picking the two stalwart cricketers Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in the team announced. Indisputably, these two cricketers have rendered yeomen service to the sport in India and their admirable statistics speak volumes about their exploits on the field against every opposition and diverse conditions. They are the two match-winners who have won several games for the country over the years. No disputing this.
PC: Sporting News
- The moot point to ponder over here is whether the selection of two stalwarts almost in the twilight of their glorious career deserves to be considered in a format that demands young limbs and even more innovative skill sets. The answer must be an emphatic no. T20 cricket has changed the very notion of how cricket used to be played. The demanding nature of the attacking format calls for young and fresh talents prepared to take risks right from the start. As you may know, Rohit Sharma hasn’t set the T20 format on fire over the last few years. Virat Kohli too has played well within himself rather than come out with eye-popping performances. Several exciting cricketers are waiting in the wings. Those talents could have been picked. Thus, I feel selecting Rohit and Virat is a retrograde step. Selectors should have moved on from these two.