Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh reckons the current team has not shown the fearlessness that one needs to win ICC titles and there is a need to play more freely
Harbhajan Singh (Pic: AFP)
Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh reckons the current team has not shown the fearlessness that one needs to win ICC titles and there is a need to play more freely. He also believes that fielding four seamers in the World Test Championship (WTC) final was a bit "too much".
Having come short in ICC knockout games on numerous occasions since winning their last trophy in 2013, India find themselves in a difficult position at the WTC final against Australia.
Harbhajan, who is here as a commentator, observed the players become "too tight" in high pressure games and advised them not to worry about the results.
"There is nothing lacking (in terms of skills). The more you play the big games the better you get. I feel you need to play more freely in these big games. I think we have become a bit too tight. Will have to play more freely and not think about the results.
"The more you leave the players to do the job, they will do the job. If you put pressure on them that if you don't perform well, some get dropped and some don't (they will feel underconfident).
"The idea is to give them confidence that even if you don't do well, give your best. That way we will probably lift a few cups. Just play fearlessly," the two-time World Cup winner told PTI at The Oval.
Maybe management factored conditions only on day 1 before selecting team
World's number one Test bowler Ravichandran Ashwin had to sit out of the game as India went into the final with four seamers and a spinner in Ravindra Jadeja.
Many cricket veterans including Sanjay Manjrekar and Ricky Ponting expressed their surprise on learning about this decision.
India had got the combination wrong in the WTC final couple of years ago as well and it seems they have erred on this occasion too.
"The game is for five days so you have to choose your bowlers according to those five days. Ashwin is a proven performer, four seamers are a bit too much. Day four, day five are as important as day one. It is also important how you finish the race,” Harbhajan said.
"May be the management did not think too much about it and went ahead with four seamers which is way too many. It was still understandable if someone of the caliber of Mohammed Siraj and Mohammed Shami was sitting out, then it would have still been okay (to play four pacers)," added the former off-spinner.
(With PTI inputs)