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India vs New Zealand: 'Current crop of Indian players in NZ has some great players,' says Jonty Rhodes

New Delhi, Nov 16: Team India suffered a heavy 10-wicket defeat at the hands of England in the semi-final of the T20 World Cup 2022 and with that their dreams of lifting the elusive silverware after a gap of 15 years were dashed.

The way Team India made its exit from the showpiece event raised eyebrows as they were outplayed by a clinical England side in all three departments.

Indian cricket team's intent and approach in the white-ball format has come under scrutiny following their one-sided loss in the semi-finals. The BCCI has hinted that the team will undergo a transition in the days to come and several senior players will make way for youngsters, who are knocking at the doors.

Former South Africa cricketer Jonty Rhodes believes the current Indian side which is set to play the T20I series in New Zealand looks relatively younger but has some quality players in the line-up.

For the three-match T20I series in New Zealand, starting Friday, the likes of Shubman Gill, Umran Malik, Ishan Kishan and Sanju Samson have been given a chance as senior players have been rested.

'Great players in current crop'

'Great players in current crop'

When asked about the young India players BCCI should invest in, Rhodes - who was announced as the mentor for 'Samp Army' globally - told reporters, "The current crop that is in New Zealand is a fairly young team and there are some great players in the line-up.

"And because of the success of the IPL, you certainly have an amazing platform to showcase their skill."

"You look at the T20 squad selected just after the T20 World Cup, that gives a good indication of the ability of some of the players. It's a strong line up without the senior players."

Rhodes on Arshdeep

Rhodes on Arshdeep

Rhodes also said that young India pacer Arshdeep Singh has grown tremendously as a cricketer and has great potential but comparing him to the great Wasim Akram will put him under pressure.

The 23-year-old left-arm India pacer was one of the positives of India's T20 World Cup campaign that ended with a semifinal defeat to eventual champions England.

Arshdeep, with his ability to swing the ball both ways ended up as the team's leading wicket-taker, claiming 10 scalps from six games at an economy of 7.80.

"I think that's putting him under a lot of pressure, to compare him to the great Wasim Akram, the sultan of swing," Rhodes said.

"Arsheep has certainly grown in the last two years and that's been the case with the Indian fast bowlers. You look at a Bumrah and his progression was so so quick and Arshdeep has done the same, he is a young fast bowler, willing to learn and listen and he puts in the hard yards.

"He does swing the ball and has been a revelation at the death. He's great in the powerplay, has got good control and he can come around the wicket like Wasim Akram effectively," he added.

Rhodes, who worked with Arshdeep during his stint as IPL side Punjab Kings' fielding coach, feels the youngster has great potential.

"He's someone who has great potential and the possibility of having a fantastic career. But you start to compare players to the ones who played before them, and that puts them under unnecessary pressure. He wants to be the best Arshdeep Singh."

Jonty on IPL's impact on overseas players

Jonty on IPL's impact on overseas players

Rhodes claimed that a premier T20 tournament like IPL has benefitted the English, Australian and South African players a lot for the players got used to playing in conditions that were once alien to them.

"You spend a lot of time in India during the IPL format and even if the players are not playing all the matches, they are participating in conditions that were difficult for them before.

"They work and train with some of the best players and coaches in the world, that sort of experience helps grow their game just by asking questions."

On T10 format

On T10 format

Talking about the T10 format, the South African said it could be a good fit in multi-sport events such as the Olympics and the Commonwealth Games.

"T10 is a shorter, more exciting format than even the T20 game that takes three and a half hours. Maybe at competitions like the CWG or Olympics, we could see it, but the ICC at this stage with their FTP can fit in another format, they are struggling as it is."

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Story first published: Wednesday, November 16, 2022, 21:40 [IST]
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