In the run-up to the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka, Indian skipper MS Dhoni said that a lot will depend on how well his team adapts to the conditions and pitches in Sri Lanka.
The Indian team reached Colombo today, and Dhoni said: ”We want to do well. But the wickets in Sri Lanka have changed. On our earlier trips, the wickets would generally help spinners but last time out it didn’t really help them. The pacers might enjoy the conditions. So we will have to see how the wickets behave and react to the situation as it comes.”
The Indians play a warm-up match against Pakistan before starting the tournament against Afghanistan on September 19th. And even though Afghanistan may seem like a weak opposition, Dhoni won’t be taking any chances.
“We won’t be taking any team lightly,” he said, before admitting that India have always been a side reliant on batsmen for a good performance: “We have always been a side that has relied on batsmen. The four overs of the part-time bowlers will be very crucial.”
Over the selection of Yuvraj, Dhoni said, “He is a champion player. Over his selection… you have to ask the selectors. They can throw more light on that. But he will bring balance to the side.”
Both Duncan Fletcher and Dhoni admitted that switching from one format to the other in quick space is difficult: “It is difficult to prepare for all three formats. The fact that there is so little time between them makes it harder,” said the coach.
Even though spinners have been in the limelight after their success against New Zealand, Dhoni also played up the importance of the seamers: “It’s not like our seamers have done badly. A lot will depend on the kind of wickets. And you have remember that a lot of our bowlers are specialists and have a lot of variations, for example Balaji’s experience and variation will definitely help us.”
India are in Group A with England and Afghanistan before the Super Eight starts on September 27th.