1983 World Cup hero Mohinder Amarnath reckons MS Dhoni's men lack the sheen of champions
India's 1983 World Cup hero Mohinder Amarnath (man of the match in the semi-final and final) reckoned the Indian team looks jaded and the chances of the side defending the World Cup title don't appear bright.
Gary Kirsten (left) and Mohinder Amarnath during a promotional event in the city yesterday. Pic/Khushnum Bhandari
"I have serious doubts about the current Indian team. They don't look like a champion team, they look jaded. That sheen which we all want to see in the side is missing.
They have been in Australia for a while now and have been playing a lot of cricket. Probably, a break could have made a lot of difference," Amarnath said on the sidelines of Perfect Strokes, a Royal Stag event at Mahalaxmi Race Course yesterday.
Amarnath added: "It's a big worry after Ishant's (Sharma) injury. Jadeja (Ravindra), Rohit (Sharma) are carrying injuries. When you go into such a big tournament, you need to have 100% fit players. You can have niggles here and there, but carrying major injuries is not a good sign."
Rohit Sharma walks back after being dismissed for eight in warm-up tie against Australia yesterday. Pic/AFP
On India's bowling, the most concerning aspect of Mahendra Singh Dhoni's team, Amarnath said: "Again, it has something to do with injuries. You don't get time to recover. If you are not 100% fit you cannot give your best. They have to get their basics and rhythm right.
I am surprised that Bhuvneshwar Kumar hasn't been able to move the ball in Australia. Roger Binny, Manoj Prabhakar, Javagal Srinath have all done wonderfully well in Australia. With this bowling line-up, India need at least 260-plus runs in each and every game if they want to win."
Amarnath said he was even worried about India tackling the weaker teams like Ireland and Zimbabwe. "The conditions can change drastically in New Zealand and Australia. India should make it to the quarter-final, but the semi-final will be tough and a challenge for them."
The former national selector felt there was no need to include three spinners in the squad. "Two would have been good (enough). A leggie like Amit Mishra could have been a better option. Maybe, a Yuvraj Singh could have been a good asset to the team," remarked Amarnath.