WTC Final : As the World Test Championship Final between India and New Zealand approaches, both teams are making their final preparations to perform at their best in Southampton. One important aspect of these preparations is to adjust to the local conditions and get used to the English weather and pitches. To this end, several players from Indian Premier League (IPL) teams that have been eliminated from the tournament are expected to arrive in England early and join their national squad.
IPL players joining India’s WTC final squad
According to Rohit Sharma, the vice-captain of the Indian Test team, some IPL players who are not involved in the playoffs will fly to England soon and start training with the Indian squad. These players are expected to include fast bowlers such as Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, and Mohammed Siraj, as well as batsmen like Cheteshwar Pujara and Hanuma Vihari.
The idea behind this move is to give these players more time to acclimatize to the English conditions, which are quite different from those in India or the United Arab Emirates, where the IPL was held this year. The Indian team management believes that having a few extra players around will also help in simulating match scenarios and building team camaraderie before the final.
Importance of acclimatization and preparation
The importance of acclimatization and preparation cannot be overstated, especially in a high-stakes match like the WTC Final. The conditions in England are notoriously tricky for foreign teams, with swing and seam movement being key factors that can make or break a batsman’s innings or a bowler’s spell. Moreover, the weather can be quite unpredictable, with rain and overcast skies affecting play on several occasions.
By reaching England early, the Indian players can get a head start on their opponents in terms of adapting to these conditions. They can also work on their fitness, skills, and strategy in a more focused and controlled environment, without the distractions and pressures of IPL cricket. The IPL is a great platform for honing one’s skills and gaining exposure to different types of competition, but it can also be draining and demanding, both physically and mentally.
Benefits of IPL experience
That being said, the experience and confidence gained from the IPL can also be an asset for the Indian players in the WTC Final. Several of the IPL teams this year have had strong Indian contingents, with players like KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, and Ravindra Jadeja performing exceptionally well for their franchises. These players can bring that form and momentum into the national team and complement the established stars like Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane.
Moreover, the IPL has exposed the Indian players to different playing styles, conditions, and oppositions, which can only enhance their cricketing knowledge and adaptability. The fact that several IPL teams have had to play their matches in neutral venues due to the pandemic has also meant that the players have had to be more flexible and adaptable in terms of their travel, lodging, and training arrangements.
In conclusion, the decision to send some IPL players early to England for WTC Final preparations seems like a sensible and strategic move by the Indian team management. It shows that they are taking the challenge seriously and leaving no stone unturned in their quest for glory. Whether this move will pay off or not remains to be seen, but one thing is certain: the Indian team is leaving nothing to chance and giving themselves the best possible chance to succeed in this historic match.
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