Former India captain Anil Kumble reckons the country’s T20 team needs more all-rounders in the lineup, with Rohit Sharma and Co returning after a disappointing semifinal loss to England at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022.
Speaking to ESPNcricinfo, Kumble highlighted the balance in England’s team and suggested that India should aim for a similar approach, with a number of all-round options in the playing XI.
“...what I see as something that certainly needs to be done is, how we keep talking about bowlers need to bat. But I think in Indian cricket, you need batters to bowl too for the balance of the team,” Kumble was quoted as saying.
“That’s exactly what England have. They had too many choices. They used Liam Livingstone. Moeen Ali has hardly bowled in this tournament. So those are the choices that you need.”
India lost by 10 wickets against England at the Adelaide Oval on Thursday to get knocked out of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. The 2007 champions struggled to get going with the bat for the majority of their innings before being blown away by Jos Buttler and Alex Hales.
Kumble suggested that there needs to be a change in the way India pick their T20 side.
“Unfortunately even in the India A team that gets picked, it’s mostly batters who don’t bowl. It’s important to create that brand of cricket and say that this is how the Indian team is going to do it and it should follow right through the system. I think the more and more you play T20s, it’s going to be like this, where you just come and show your power. So that’s exactly how I think T20 is going to go forward,” he said.
The 52-year-old legendary leg-spinner also said that each player must have a clear role in the team and stick to that role in domestic cricket too.
“One is of course having that brand of cricket and then choosing the players to do that but I think it’s also important that these players play their specific roles wherever they play.
“Because it’s not about just playing that role for India and then going back to your domestic cricket and franchise cricket and then changing the way you’re going to go about it. For example, Pant today (Thursday) batted for India at No. 6, he walked in in the 19th over. He never does that in domestic cricket,” said Kumble.
“So you need some kind of role definition as well there and that’s something I think is very critical if you’re going to build a potent team where you need a back-up for those roles and not necessarily your six best players whatever role they can. It’s very difficult to do that in a World Cup.”