So who’s going to win the Cup? I don’t have an answer to that question. How can I say that now? I can only hope that the team is in good condition. Everyone is fit and well. That’s all I can hope for. I can’t say anything else. Space is a very important factor and it’s very important right now, he said.
Sharma also emphasized that he would be happy if the expectations of the fans are not too high. What people expect, we cannot control. In India, wherever we come, be it airport or hotel, we are told, World Cup jeetna hai sir (You have to win the World Cup). This is happening everywhere. It will never stop, he said with a smile.
India’s record in ICC events has been a matter of controversy. They have often been successful in the final part of tournaments but could not win the knockout… It happens.
In 2015, India reached the semifinals but lost to Australia. The next time, in 2019, they lost again in the poto New Zealand. Elland. In the last two T20 World Cups – UAE in 2021 and Australia in 2022 – the team failed to reach the final.
In Australia last year, Sharma took over the captaincy from Virat Kohli but the jinx continued. Now he has a chance to leave behind a legacy but, he says, he doesn’t want to think about it.
There is an ICC trophy every year now; if you didn’t win it, it was a bad year! People just forget what a good job was done in those 10 months. It is only fair that we, as the Indian cricket team, are expected to win big trophies. We are one of the best teams in the world. We should be good at that. It is certainly disappointing, Sharma said.
At 36, this could be his last World Cup as a leader and possibly as a player. Does he feel the captaincy has come to him at the right time or has it dragged on? Obviously you have to be at the peak of form to do it, sksay, 26, 27 years old. But you can’t always get what you want. You say that the Indian team had and has its own captains. A lot of other players deserved to be captain of the team. I had to wait my turn and that’s absolutely fair. The guys who were before me, Virat was before me, MC (Dhoni) too, he said.
Just look at the names that have been overlooked: Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag… All of them are the founders of Indian cricket. Yuvraj Singh should not be forgotten either. He has never been the captain of the Indian national team. Yuvraj was such a match-winner for India, he should have been captain at some stage, but he didn’t get it. That’s the way life is. Now I have got it and I am grateful for it. I would rather get it when I know how to manage the team, when I know what is required of me and all that. Not when I don’t know the captain’s ABCD. So it’s a good thing in that respect.
Sharma also spoke about the difficulties that thee to overcome during the almost two-month tournament, which was also the reason why the team selection headache was so great. The team needs to play 11 matches to reach the World Cup finals. The last time we played this format was in 2019, but playing 11 ODIs in a month and a half is not easy. It is a long World Cup. We don’t want any of our pacers to break down. That’s why we have opted for more of them.
Comparing the 2011 team with the 2011 team, Sharma said the team that won the World Cup under Dhoni’s leadership had more experienced players. In the 2011 team, everyone was known. Has any position changed? No. You didn’t suddenly need to bring in Harbhajan Singh at number 4-5 because all the guys are match-winners in the positions they play. Now we have a lot of new faces. We had an injury problem, two players (Rahul and Shreyas) are coming back after two months. So things looked different and we had to make an appointmentThe choice decisions are.