T20 World Cup 2021: What does Team India need to qualify for the semifinals?


After a shocking and heart-breaking defeat against their arch-rivals Pakistan, Virat Kohli and Co. will look to bounce back in the ongoing T20 World Cup. Pakistan ended India’s three-decade win record against them in the World Cup, that too with an extremely impressive and eye-catching performance, while Team India’s bowling attack looked helpless in front of openers Mohammad Rizwan and captain Babar Azam who helped Pakistan chase down the 155-run target with ease without losing a single wicket.

WHAT NEXT FOR INDIA?

India will face New Zealand in their next league stage fixture on 31st October at Dubai International Stadium. The Black Caps also suffered defeat against Pakistan on Tuesday(26 October) in their opening fixture of the elite tournament as the Babar Azam-led side chased a target of 135 runs with five wickets in hand. Now New Zealand will also aim to bounce back when they take on India.

Both the teams need to win this fixture as out of the six teams in group 2, Pakistan is the top contender to qualify for the semifinals having won their both the games so far.

Meanwhile, if New Zealand win their match against India and emerge victorious in all their other fixtures against Afghanistan, Namibia and Scotland then they will qualify with Pakistan for the knockout stage. The same criteria go for India as well.

If the match between the Men in Blue and New Zealand ends in a tie then India’s big defeat against Pakistan will come back to haunt them as the Green Shirts won the match by 10 wickets which had a negative impact on India’s net run-rate.

WHAT CHANGES CAN BE MADE?

When a reporter asked Virat Kohli about dropping Rohit Sharma to bring in Ishan Kishan he reacted in a very shocking and furiously asked the reporter “would you drop Rohit Sharma from T20 International?” But the likes of Hardik Pandya who was expected to make an impact as a pinch-hitter and finisher failed to impress and even got an injury while batting due to which he couldn’t even contribute for his side in the fielding department, where he’s exceptional.

Ishan Kishan or Shardul Thakur can be brought into the squad if Hardik Pandya is not completely fit for the next fixture but that would mean Virat Kohli dropping to the number 4 position with KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma opening and Ishan Kishan coming in at number 3.

Also, Rahul Chahal would be eager to justify his selection ahead of Yuzvendra Chahal if given a chance and he can replace Varun Chakravarthy, who failed horribly against Pakistan.

India’s probable playing XI against New Zealand:

Virat Kohli (C), Ishan Kishan, Rohit Sharma (VC), KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (WK), Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami.

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Sagar Biswas

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