Nasser Hussain points out what is ‘sometimes the problem with the Indian side’

Virat Kohli

Former England captain Nasser Hussain questioned India’s lack of “fearless brand of cricket” after captain Virat Kohli’s team suffered an early exit from the 2021 T20 World Cup.

India failed to reach the semi-finals after losing to New Zealand and Pakistan. Wins over Afghanistan and Scotland were not enough to salvage a berth among the final four teams.

“You have got to go out and express yourself. India have got so much talent. That may be the only thing that’s holding India back in ICC events. They don’t quite play the fearless brand of cricket that they deserve to because they are so talented,” Hussain was quoted as saying on the tournament’s official website.

India went into the tournament with several star players who had been in action for various franchises in the 2021 Indian Premier League. These included Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya of the Mumbai Indians and KL Rahul of the Punjab Kings.

Nas’ ‘favourites’ fail him

“I had them as favourites. They had been playing IPL here, are a star-studded side. They got a setback in that first game. The way Shaheen Afridi bowled in the powerplay, those two deliveries that Rohit and Rahul got would have got a lot of great cricketers out,” added Hussein, who singled out all-rounder Pandya’s selection as a specialist batsman as problematic.

“That’s sometimes the problem with the Indian side. They are so good at the top, some of the middle-order don’t get much of a hit and suddenly you need a plan B and that was found wanting.

“I see India as a very talented side but sometimes selection-wise Hardik just playing as a batter alters the balance of the side. Against New Zealand, the idea to split Rohit and Rahul was not a good one.”

Also read: Five points worth knowing for England vs NZ semi-final


Who did make it into the T20 World Cup semi-finals?

England and New Zealand will meet in Wednesday’s first semi-final in Abu Dhabi. Australia and Pakistan will contest the second semi-final in Dubai on Thursday.

Sri Lanka, West Indies and South Africa were among the other teams who failed to qualify for the semi-finals. The West Indies are the reigning champions and most successful side in the history of the tournament with two titles.

Another T20 World Cup is scheduled for 2022.