Rohit Sharma revealed that Virat Kohli & Co. will be looking for an emphatic win ahead of next year’s ICC ODI World Cup, which will be played in England itself. He also lauded the bowling talents of wrist spinning duo, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, who will be crucial in the middle overs.
The Indian cricket team is potentially gearing up for one their most important series in recent years. The UK tour was always touted to be a fierce affair between the top-ranked international teams, but what makes matters more interesting is next year’s 2019 ICC ODI World Cup, which will be held in England and Wales. Virat Kohli & Co. will see this as an opportunity to see where they stand against the home team and also acclimatize themselves with conditions in England.
Mumbai Indians skipper and Indian opener, Rohit Sharma, reckoned that the ongoing tour was crucial for India’s chances at next year’s World Cup. Sharma also spoke about how well the Indian team has performed in recent years under the leadership of Kohli.
"I think this tour is very important. The World Cup is going to be played in this part of the world exactly a year late, in terms of preparation this is going to be good for us to see where we stand as a team as far as combinations are concerned and to see what targets are going to be available for us as well.
"We’ve seen in the recent series between England and Australia which was a very high-scoring series. So it will be important for us to see where stand and we need to do in order to move forward as a team. As far as ODI cricket was concerned, we’ve played some good cricket in and out of India and this tour comes as another challenge for us to see how far we’ve come as a team," Rohit said ahead of India’s first ODI against England.
When quizzed about the attacking threat that the deadly wrist-spinner - Kuldeep Yadav brought to the team, Sharma responded by heaping praise on the duo of Yadav and Chahal as he added that the pair would be crucial in the middle-overs during the upcoming ODI series.
"Kuldeep Yadav is definitely a very attacking option anywhere we play. It was unfortunate he missed out the last game because it entirely depends on the captain and the coach, what they consider and combination they are comfortable with.
"He gives us that attacking option in the 50-over format, which is slightly longer as compared to the T20 format. The middle-overs are a crucial time in any game and it will be important to put brakes on the opposition batsmen during this period. Yadav managed to do that in South Africa earlier his year, and hopefully, he can do it again this time as well. Chahal and Yadav will give us this option in the middle overs and hopefully we can stop the English batsmen from getting the big runs," Rohit added.