Too much talk and not enough substance – India’s semi-final unravelling was a long time coming


As the ball soared into the Adelaide night sky and consigned India to a thumping 10-wicket defeat in the semi-final of the T20 World Cup, thousands at the Adelaide Oval and millions back home wondered how it had gone so wrong for the Men In Blue.

England, quite understandably, were dubbed one of the favourites before the T20 World Cup. But India were also among the frontrunners. They had won four Super 12 games – a feat no other team accomplished, and had Suryakumar Yadav and Virat Kohli in pristine form. Arshdeep Singh and Bhuvneshwar Kumar were also picking up wickets in the powerplay for fun, with Hardik Pandya regularly proving that he is as good an all-rounder as any in this format.The answer is not straightforward (surprise, surprise). One thing that can be said for certain, though, is that this particular defeat should not be as much of a shock as people are making it out to be. Not because England are one of the most belligerent white-ball units on the planet, but because India, almost through the entirety of the tournament, papered over cracks that once exposed, were going to bring the roof crashing down on them.For much of the past year, the Men In Blue have talked about being more aggressive and how they had realised the mistakes committed previously. Prior to the T20 World Cup, they were walking that talk, scoring at 8.6 runs per over in the powerplay betweenthe of this edition.India’s batting approach never felt right throughout the T20 World Cup

The personnel, throughout the tournament, did not change either. KL Rahul kept bashing Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, only to stumble against England, Pakistan and South Africa. Rohit could not discover his mojo at any point, and his painful 28-ball 27 in the semi-final was a testament to his struggles.

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