As India and West Indies get ready to play in the three-match T20I series, skipper Virat Kohli address a press conference in which he spoke about the series in the context of next year’s World Cup. The captain said that ahead of the T20 World Cup, the side needs to focus on batting first and defending totals.
In the recent past, the men in blue have won their maximum number of matches while chasing in T20Is. Two recent instances in which they lost while batting first was the game against Bangladesh in Delhi, and the one before that against South Africa in Bangalore.
India is currently ranked fifth on the ICC Team rankings in T20Is, and Kohli feels that the inability to defend totals has hurt the team.
“We need to focus on batting first and defending low totals as well. Those are two things that we need to really focus on, T20 is a format where you can experiment a lot more things than ODIs and Tests. You want to give chances to the youngsters in the shortest format, we have not played the strongest eleven together in T20Is so rankings cannot be considered,” Kohli told reporters ahead of the first T20I.
“We have the mindset that we will not focus on the rankings. Now heading into the T20 World Cup, we need to take our best team to the field, we would probably be playing our strongest eleven going into the World Cup,” he added.
Kohli gave the T20I series against Bangladesh a miss to spend some time with his family but returned in the Test series and scored a fine century in the pink-ball Test in Kolkata. For this series, Kohli said that it will be his responsibility to anchor the middle-order.
“I have come back into the side so it is my responsibility to take control of the middle order. One individual needs to bat long and others need to play with a good strike rate.”
India will definitely not take the West Indies lightly in the shortest format, but in the other two longer formats, the hosts seem to be the firm favourites.