It'is Too Far Away To Think Of The World Cup 2023-in This Moment - Kohli > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more
Cricket news - It's too far away to think of the 2023 World Cup right now - Kohli
India captain Kohli maintained that it was too early for the ODI team to be thinking about the next World Cup to be held in 2023. Having been eliminated in the semifinal of the 2019 edition last month, there were questions over the team's inability to go the full distance in ICC tournaments since their famous Champions Trophy win in 2013. With India set to play it's first ODI since the World Cup on Thursday, Kohli stressed on the need to stay in the present.
"2023 is too far ahead to be honest," said the 30-year-old during the post-match press conference after the third T20I. "You start looking forward to the World Cup and planning for it 12 months prior. Not four years away. I think the priority is to keep Indian cricket at the top. Play consistent cricket, go out there and win games."
Since the ODI series loss in Australia back in early 2016, India have lost just two bilateral series - in England (2018) and at home against Australia this year prior to the World Cup. Kohli exuded pride in his team's performances and underlined the team's intentions to be a top ODI side.
"For us, the priority has always been to be one of the most consistent sides in the world and in the last three to four years, I think we've been able to achieve that," he pointed out. "We're the no.2 side in the world and there's a good reason to that. We've been at no.1 as well sometime. It's the kind of cricket that we've played that has gotten us up here."
True to his words, India made a clinical start to the West Indies tour with a 3-0 whitewash in the T20I series. With the visitors having sealed the series in the second game itself, there were changes aplenty in the dead rubber and Kohli was happy that the experimentation paid off.
"We wanted to try a couple of guys and we thought of giving the Chahar brothers a go in this game. With the new ball, he (Deepak Chahar) was outstanding. There was some cloud cover but the kind of swing he got early on and the three wickets really set West Indies back. I was definitely impressed with how Deepak bowled and also how Rahul came back in his third over to take a wicket."
A significant gain for India from the final T20I was the composure shown by young Rishabh Pant who produced his career-best score in the format and more crucially, batted till the very end to see his side through in the run chase. Kohli was all praise for Pant and hoped that the southpaw would keep the good work going. "For the first two games, he was really disappointed he didn't get any runs. He was playing really well, hitting the ball well," stated Kohli.
"That's how T20 cricket goes. Sometimes you don't have the rub of the green. Today he made sure he applied himself and backed his skills. Backed himself for the big shots when required and really played with the tempo of the innings. Especially finishing the match, that was the message from the batting coach for him. Finish the match, score the winning runs. That always gives you extra confidence as a player when you finish games and return not out."
Another dashing southpaw, the more seasoned Shikhar Dhawan had a quiet return to the side with no significant contributions in the series. Playing his first series after having been ruled out midway during the 2019 World Cup with a thumb injury, the opening batsman looked rusty while aggregating a mere 27 runs from the three matches so far. Kohli didn't seem to be bothered by the returns and backed the opener to come good in the ODI series.
"He's (Dhawan) a very experienced player. T20 cricket, we don't really look too much guys are doing in terms of form and stuff like that. It's a format where you need to get on with the game and you will get out at some stage. 50-over cricket gives you a lot more time to get into your innings and I think once he gets some time out there in the middle, we all know the skill sets that he has and the way he can bat. So not concerned at all."
Kohli also complemented the ground staff at Providence Stadium for providing a prompt start despite the rain. He also felt that the fickle nature of the weather was very typical of the climate in the Caribbean.
"We expect the weather to be like this everywhere in the West Indies. It can be raining one moment and then suddenly be very sunny. I think the ground staff did an amazing job to get the game ready and the drainage was also really good. It didn't feel like we had rain in the morning."
Once the game began, it was quite hot and humid in Guyana, thereby testing the stamina of all the players to the hilt. With the first ODI also to be played at this venue and just a day's break in between, Kohli felt that it was important for the players to adapt to the demanding conditions. "We didn't have any practice session yesterday and conditions were a bit hot today as well," he observed. "So a lot of the guys are going to take an off tomorrow.
"From that point of view, I think it was important to get a hit out in the middle and get some runs. Guys who bowled and fielded, it's very important to take rest and recover for day after because it's going to be a longer game. If conditions are going to be like this, it's going to be challenging with this much humidity."
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