An unnamed BCCI official was adamant that winning matches away from home will boost the overall morale of the squad in order to be truly termed as ‘invincibles’. They are sure that the squad they have assembled has it in them to win abroad after questions were raised over recent performances.
A strong performance in 2017 saw the Indian team play the likes of Australia, England, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka and emerge victorious ultimately catapulting the team to first in world rankings for Tests and second in ODI rankings. The performances raised a lot of expectations from the fans as India travelled to South Africa - a place where they had never won a Test series. But to everyone’s disappointment, the Indian side collapsed dramatically in both their opening fixtures versus the Proteas which ultimately cost them the series.
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BCCI is convinced that the previous FTP was flawed in terms of playing so many home series at one go. The board is also persuaded to believe that "those wins at home only instilled a sense of false pride in the team".
"This team played five of their series in the last one-and-half years only at home. They don't have a clue on playing away from home. The board has already addressed the issue," a top BCCI official told TOI.
Kohli had previously warned before the series versus South Africa that 18 months of back-to-back cricket had taken a toll on the squad and that a cramped up schedule was bound to have adverse effects on the players. The constant changes in the playing XI by Virat and co. has also not gone down well with the BCCI bosses, as one prominent official said, "If you want to be called invincible, you have to start winning away from home as well. This is the time for some series introspection for team building."
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