After spending so long as the top of International cricket, one question is being whispered louder with every passing match. Are India a spent force in limited overs cricket?
At first it may look like a nonsensical question, how can you doubt such a team that have won the T20 title and World Cup in the last decade? As good as those achievements are, things have been a bit downhill ever since.
India came into this year's World Cup as defending champions but lost to Australia in the semi-finals. It was the manner of the defeat that was most concerning, the fact that MS Dhoni was left to try and save the game.
Sometimes that happens, but then Sri Lanka took India’s T20 crown with a shock win in the final. India, who possess talent such as Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane and Suresh Raina to name just a few, surely could not be in a crisis.
As talented as these players are, sometimes defeats happen and no matter how good you are, or how good your team is, it’s just something you can’t do anything to change. However, losing to minnows such as Zimbabwe, for example, lead to doubts being raised.
Again it could be dismissed as a one-off, but when India lost a series to Bangladesh the first in their history, many were calling for panic stations.
With all due respect to The Tigers, who have been on a fairly decent run of late, nevertheless India should be beating them.
The bad form has carried on. The Indians are currently playing South Africa and are really struggling in the series. The Proteas are the top ranked side in one-day internationals and comfortably enjoyed a 2-0 success in the T20 series.
On the back of such a comprehensive series defeat, the hosts were looking for improved fortunes in the one-day internationals. But, like the T20 series, the Asian side have been outplayed.
Unfortunately, Kohli hasn't been starring, the leader and general Dhoni has been struggling to rally his troops and the star-studded batting line-up look star-struck.
The Indian batting line-up have been playing musical chairs, a good game to upset the consistency of a side, a bad game to improve form.
It has clearly affected them, Kohli has been like Bambi on ice, but the 26-year old scored a magnificent 138, followed by 77 after being restored at number three.
India were thrashed in the final ODI against a very strong South Africa, taking them to a series-deciding match is still an achievement, but there is a lot of work left to do.
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