New Delhi, May 16: Former India cricketer and selector Roger Binny has opined that despite the fact the Indian Cricket Team has not played international cricket for quite some time but the Virat Kohli-led side only needs to regroup and aim to be match fit.
In a column written for Times of India, the former selector said, "The Indian team goes into the World Cup after what has been a long season. The good thing is that they have been playing some sort of cricket. Now the fact is that it may be construed as being too much at times, but that's the way modern day cricket is. The challenge is to keep themselves fresh for the World Cup."
He also seemed happy with the fact that unlike T20 format, the bowlers will get some time to relax in the 50-over games.
"One good thing is that the bowlers can be relaxed in one-day game, unlike in a T20 format when a batsman is trying to knock you out from the very first ball. We had the Aussies before the IPL, so in a sense it has been a long drawn out season. It is time for the Indian squad to regroup and most importantly aim to be match fit."
The 63-year-old - who has played 27 Tests and 72 ODIs for India - added further that playing international matches in the run up to the World Cup won't be an advantage for the teams because English conditions and tracks during the World Cup will be different.
"I have been following most other sides. A lot of them are playing a lot one-day cricket in the lead-up. In fact Pakistan is playing some 11 games in England before the World Cup. I don't think it is an advantage for anyone. If you are looking at a Test series, then you can look to go there well in advance, because English conditions are different. There can be swing and some movement off the tracks in Test matches. But in ODIs and T20 cricket hardly any technique is involved. Most times you will have flat pitches and even it the ball is seaming, you have to whack the ball because the time is short! So acclimatisation in theory is fine for Test cricket but not for the white ball format. India won't take time to acclimatise themselves unlike a Pakistan because Sarfaraz Ahmed's side are coming off a poor recent run," Binny added.
Binny, who was part of Kapil Dev's 'Daredevils' when India lifted their maiden World Cup trophy 1983 in England, also believes that young Rishabh Pant should be added as a replacement to injured Kedar Jadhav, if the Pune-based all-rounder fails to recover on time.
"Fitness, as I say, is the key to India's chances. I have noted that Kedar Jadhav is under a bit of a cloud. If he doesn't get fit, I would go for Rishabh Pant. He is one of those players who can tear any bowling apart and win you games. Pant can change the course of a game in ten overs or half an hour. You need someone like him if you want to win major titles. He may come across an being immature in shot selection at times. But how does one learn? Only by playing more, earning your place in the team. He is a long-term investment," Binny concluded.