"They are not a team to be taken lightly": Indian coach Dravid not taking Afghanistan lightly in T20 WC Super 8 | Crickit
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"They are not a team to be taken lightly": Indian coach Dravid not taking Afghanistan lightly in T20 WC Super 8

ANI |
Jun 20, 2024 04:03 AM IST

Dravid said, "If you just look at their squad, they might not have a lot of international experience as in the other formats of the game, but a lot of their players do play in a lot of T20 leagues, more than some of our players do. But they are sort of well-travelled cricketers, especially in the T20 circuit. They are very prominent members of their IPL teams, and other teams as well. So, certainly, in this format, they are not a team to be taken lightly. They are deservedly in the Super 8s and we will not treat them any differently as we would treat any other team that we expect to play in the Super 8s."

Bridgetown [Barbados], : Ahead of his side's ICC T20 World Cup against Afghanistan, Indian head coach Rahul Dravid said that the team will not take their Asian opponents lightly, given their immense experience in T20 cricket leagues worldwide.

"They are not a team to be taken lightly": Indian coach Dravid not taking Afghanistan lightly in T20 WC Super 8
"They are not a team to be taken lightly": Indian coach Dravid not taking Afghanistan lightly in T20 WC Super 8

India will be playing Afghanistan in their ICC T20 World Cup Super Eights game at Barbados on Wednesday. India ended their group stage with three wins in three matches against Ireland, Pakistan and the USA in Group A while their last game against Canada ended in a washout.

Afghanistan ended the group stage in second place in Group C, with three wins and a loss to West Indies.

Ahead of the game in a pre-match press conference, Dravid said, "If you just look at their squad, they might not have a lot of international experience as in the other formats of the game, but a lot of their players do play in a lot of T20 leagues, more than some of our players do. But they are sort of well-travelled cricketers, especially in the T20 circuit. They are very prominent members of their IPL teams, and other teams as well. So, certainly, in this format, they are not a team to be taken lightly. They are deservedly in the Super 8s and we will not treat them any differently as we would treat any other team that we expect to play in the Super 8s."

On the team having a flexible batting order, except for the openers Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, Dravid said that each situation is unique and nothing can be set in stone, so one has to be flexible and adapt according to situations.

"I think it is something that we have always been conscious of, the concept of being able to have players who can be adaptable and float in that middle order if and when required. And it is something that we have continuously striven to do as and when required and as and when possible. Not just for the sake of it. In the Pakistan game, we moved Axar up the order. There was a specific thinking around it. There are other situations where we have moved Rishabh a little bit up the order in this thing. So, there's been a little bit of thinking around that," he continued.

"I think in the T20 format, especially with the match-ups, with the dimensions of ground, with the kind of conditions, you do see it happening quite a lot more in the T20 format where I guess every over or every 10 balls is actually quite critical and matters much more than probably it does in another format. I think most teams, I think, are trying to make use of that, trying to make use of match-ups, trying to make use of the best use of their resources to try and maximize the 120 balls the best that they can," he concluded his point.

About the pitch in Barbados, Dravid said that while dew might not be a factor, maybe wind turns out to be one.

"The wind blows quite strongly from one side to the other. As you said, the boundary sizes might be smaller on one side, and bigger on another side. There is a bit of a slope. It is probably be a quicker outfield than what we experienced in New York. So, again, we will have to adjust, we will have to adapt," he added.

On playing a different combination of players in West Indies, where wrist spinners like Adam Zampa of Australia and England's Rashid Khan have done well, Dravid said that the squad has been chosen in such a way that anyone comes into the team and plays without affecting the balance.

"A lot of thought has gone into the squad, keeping all kinds of conditions in mind. We are lucky that we've got a few all-rounders in the mix that allow us to be able to do that. So, like you rightly said, even though in New York we had eight batting options, we also had seven bowling options. So, we had both sides covered to a large extent. Yes, of course, the wrist spinners we do understand play a big role. We have got two really quality wrist spinners. So, certainly, I am sure that they will come into this tournament sooner rather than later," he concluded.

Squads:

India Squad: Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant, Suryakumar Yadav, Shivam Dube, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Siraj, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Kuldeep Yadav, Sanju Samson, Yuzvendra Chahal

Afghanistan Squad: Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Ibrahim Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Azmatullah Omarzai, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi, Karim Janat, Rashid Khan, Noor Ahmad, Naveen-ul-Haq, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Fareed Ahmad Malik, Mohammad Ishaq, Nangeyalia Kharote, Hazratullah Zazai.

This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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