India vs South Africa T20 series : A scrutiny required


(This is an entry for our sports-writing competition, the first of its kind, The Correspondent. This article has been written by Ankit Mukhopadhyay.)



1st T20: Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, Dharamsala
INDIA 199/5 (20.0 Ovs), SOUTH AFRICA 200/3 (19.3 Ovs)

2nd T20: Barabati Stadium, Cuttack
INDIA 92/10 (17.2 Ovs), SOUTH AFRICA 96/4 (17.1 Ovs)

3rd T20: Eden Gardens, Calcutta. Cancelled due to rain.

This is the score of the recent T20 series between India and South Africa. These scores suggest that there was (or still ‘is’) a major problem in Team India. We all know that India have a problem outside sub continent. But on their home soil, you cannot put this series loss under the carpet.

In the 1st T20, India lost for bowling and on the 2nd, batting did the tricks. Some people blame MS Dhoni for this loss. Why is Ajinkya Rahane Being Kept Out? This is a question that is being asked by almost every Indian cricket fan. Dhoni has decided to keep one of the better T20 players in the country on the bench in both the matches so far.

It was not appropriate to keep Rahane out of the team
It was not appropriate to keep Rahane out of the team

Rahane, who averages 34 in the IPL, has only made an appearance as a substitute fielder in the ongoing series. Before the series began, Rahane was being picked in every expert’s playing XI, but the Indian captain thinks Ambati Rayudu suits the needs of the team better.

Another major reason for India’s below-par performances is the Axar Patel mystery. Is he being played as a spinner or as an allrounder? Either way, it’s not working. In the first T20, the 21-year-old gave away 45 runs in his 4 overs without taking a wicket. In the second match, Dhoni brought him on only in the 13th over, prompting fans to ask, “Why is Axar in the team?”.

Team director Ravi Shastri plays this questioning attack with the straight bat. According to him this is a young T20 team so it is quite natural that they can lose. But I think he told these words with the known of T20 World Cup 2016. So at the end of 2015, you cannot experiment with the young team. They should give the chance to regular players for 2016 T20 world cup.


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  1. […] The limited over series was a disaster for India, but they came back strongly in the longer format of the game. The men in blue have already pocketed the series by winning two out of the first three tests. Though the series is already in the bag, performances of some batsmen have not been up to the mark. None of Indian top order batsmen – Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteswar Pujara and Virat kohli – has got big runs. Rohit Sharma also has not been in a good touch and disappointed his fans in the Nagpur test. Only Murli Vijay and Wriddhiman Saha have showed some consistency so far. […]