Report Card- Team India for T20 World Cup

Vineet Sharma

The BCCI selection panel chose the Indian T20 World Cup squad and it immediately became a hot topic of discussion in the cricket crazy nation. We decided to do a report card of the players headed to West Indies with aspirations to capture the trophy one more time. With just four days between the end of the exhausting Indian Premier League and the World Cup, these cricketers will be under scrutiny of the cricketing world as they enter the tournament as one of the stronger contenders of the title.

MS Dhoni (Captain) - Being the skipper of the team, he has to not just inspire with his bat, but also with the decisions he takes on-field. He has been in good form and hopefully hasn’t burned-out in IPL-III. (7/10)

Murali Vijay - Such was his performance in the recently-concluded IPL-3 that the selectors wasted no time in naming Murali Vijay as injured Virender Sehwag’s replacement in T20 World Cup squad. It was due to this dashing Chennai Super Kings opener that Dhoni realized his dream of wining the IPL crown for the first time. Vijay was in tremendous form in IPL, scoring 417 runs, including a century, at an average of 38. (8/10)

Gautam Gambhir- He has not shined in IPL-III and a spate of injuries from the tournament only makes it tougher for him to deliver in the most important T20 event. He has to adjust to the pace and bounce of the Caribbean pitches fast in order to make a sizeable impact in the tournament. (6/10)

Yuvraj Singh- A mere shell of what he has been in T20s, Yuvraj has been terribly out of form; and apart from a handful of cracking cameos in the IPL he has nothing to take heart as he heads for the showdown with the world that still has memories of his 6-six wonder in 2007 fresh in their minds. (4/10)

Piyush Chawla – Far from being in form, even his selection has been fiercely debated by cricket Pundits who see him as not even the number one spinner of his IPL team KXIP. He will have to come up with something really special to prove his detractors wrong. (3/10)

Harbhajan Singh- He has been the mainstay of Indian spin department for long and Mahi would be happy to have him in the hunt owing to his good form of late. His tweakers are bound to come handy during the World Cup. (7/10)

Yusuf Pathan- The ‘Baroda Blaster’ is in a killer mindset and has earned his place in the squad. With his bat damaging the averages of the world’s best bowlers, India would be looking up to him to deliver the knockout punch. (8/10)

Ravindra Jadeja- His ban from IPL-III would mean less exposure and practice before the World Cup but he can turn this into an advantage with extensive training. Since he would not be fatigued by the IPL schedule, he can spring a surprise in the tournament. (5/10)

Dinesh Karthik- He has hit a purple patch in the IPL and he would like to carve a space for himself in India’s World Cup campaign. He can open, play in the middle or even do the finishing job for his team. This versatile guy has proved to be a great fielder in the box and out of it too. (8/10)

Zaheer Khan- India’s pace spearhead, Zaheer has been a force to reckon with in the past year and if he can retain his fitness, most of the opposition teams will have sleepless nights. (8/10)

Praveen Kumar- He has been an average performer and many see him warming the bench during the tournament. He might get a break if the other regular bowlers are injured or fail miserably. (6/10)

Ashish Nehra- Injury woes have haunted the Delhi speedster for long and he has to regain complete fitness before the tournament as the bouncy-fast pitches of West Indies are ideal hunting grounds for him. (6/10)

Suresh Raina – He has been a consistent performer and lends solidarity to the team’s composition. His technique and style might work in India’s favour in the T20 World Cup. (7/10)

Rohit Sharma- He has picked-up pace after an ordinary season and all would depend on his coming to terms with the expectations of the team. He has a long way to go and playing his natural game would definitely help in reserving a spot for himself in the team. (6/10)

R Vinay Kumar- A vital cog of the Karnataka pace attack, he has the potential to be the next Venkatesh Prasad of Indian cricket. However, his inexperience and lack of big match temperament has earned the selectors scathing criticism for his early selection and that too for the biggest international T20 event. (4/10)

These fifteen men will vie for top honours in the Twenty20 World Cup 2010 and we at Zeecric wish them all the best and hope that we get to sing the winning song with Mahi’s men once again.