Even though India are currently dealing with a few injuries at the moment, they will start the World Cup 2023 in October as good favorites. The last three ODI World Cups have been won by the home teams, the trend being started by India itself in 2011 when they ended their 28-year wait.
Now, a shorter, but still painful wait needs to be ended as India have not won a senior men’s ICC trophy for a decade now, suffering heartbreak after heartbreak almost every year.
Speaking of the 2011 WC, we focus on two players today: one who was India’s star performer in the tournament and deservedly bagged the Man of the Tournament award, Yuvraj; another, a very underrated contributor in the quarter-final and semi-final, Suresh Raina.
India will need their players to step up this year and replicate what the former players did in the 2011 WC to seal the trophy.
Here are 2 Indian players who could replicate the roles iu World Cup 2023 performed by Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina in the 2011 WC:
Ravindra Jadeja will be the balance-providing all-rounder in the line-up and will have a crucial role with both bat and ball, especially because the tournament is happening in India. Jadeja is a 10-over bank with the ball who controls the run flow and occasionally chips in with 1 wicket or sometimes 2 wickets on an average mostly in ODIs.
While Yuvraj Singh was more of a batting all-rounder heading into the World Cup 2011, his bowling was utilized to the full by MS Dhoni. Jadeja, on the other hand, is already a proper all-rounder and could perform like a dream in this World Cup 2023 to help India lift the trophy.
Since the start of 2019, in ODIs in India, Jadeja averages 31 with the bat and 41 with the ball, meaning that he’s been contributing with both bat and ball in the 50-over format, and with good consistency.
Just like Yuvraj was in 2011, in Indian conditions, Jadeja has all the skillset and ability to become the Player of the Tournament in 2023 WC with his all-round brilliance.
One thing is for certain: Axar Patel‘s batting has gone a few levels higher in the past couple of years than before. And he’s become a more wicket-taking option than ever in white-ball cricket. While earlier, Axar used to get chances for India only when Jadeja was injured or rested. Now, however, Axar has made a strong claim to get into India’s XI on his own, regardless of whether Jadeja plays or not.
Axar is a much-better wicket-taking option than, say, he was in 2018 when he got picked in the side, but was dropped when India recalled Jadeja. Axar’s batting has improved significantly in the past two years, he’s played some match-winning knocks lower down the order for India and for Delhi Capitals, who would rue not promoting him in the batting order in the IPL 2023. In IPL 2023, Axar averaged 28 with strike rate of 139.
Coming to ODIs, since the start of 2021, Axar Patel has played 13 ODIs, wherein he’s averaged 33 with the bat and 31 with the ball. It is to note than most of these matches have come away from home, which makes theses numbers even more impressive, in particular his batting numbers because he’s batted in the highly volatile role of a finisher, something which Raina did for India in 2011 World Cup.
Clearly, Axar Patel has made a strong claim to not only get into India’s squad for the World Cup 2023, but also into India’s playing XI as a lower-order all-rounder, who would provide a good bowling option in Indian conditions and would also lengthen their batting.