From World Cup 2007 to 2012: Team India isn’t getting younger even in T20s Mr Dhoni

Indian team will be very disappointed with the fact that the first T20 match against New Zealand at Visakhapatnam was washed out. The next match will be played at Chennai and things do not look good as it has been raining in Chennai as well.

The series holds much more importance than the result. ICC World T20 is just round the corner and Indian team will be looking to get in the T20 mould as soon as possible. Indian side is very good in this format and is one of the favourites to win the title but having proper match practice just ahead of the World Cup might give the Indian team that edge.

MS Dhoni’s men won the inaugural edition in South Africa in 2007. In that edition all the senior members of the team like Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and others opted to sit out and the young Indian team surprised one and all when they lifted the title.

But India’s performance in T20 has dipped since then. The Men In Blue have not been able to go past the super eight stage in the last two editions of the T20 World Cup held at England and West Indies.

This time the tournament is being played in Sri Lanka and that will be a huge boost to the Indian team. People are expecting that the team will be able to replicate the 2007 performance and can bring the cup home. There are not a lot of different faces from 2007, but the obvious fact is that the players who played in South Africa are five years older now.

T20 is supposed to be a format tailor-made for youngsters and Indian team lack on that front.
Let’s compare the Indian team from 2007 to 2012.

The biggest difference is the average age. The average age of 15-member Indian team in 2007 was 23, while the average age of the team that will participate in 2012 is 28. The major reason is that the team is exactly same and that reflects in the difference in the average age.

The age difference might not have a huge difference in the batting or the bowling department but it will be a factor while fielding. T20 is a fast paced format and fielding has on numerous occasions decides the outcome of the match.

In the 2007 side, no Indian player in the team of 15 was over 30. But, this time seven out of 15 players are over 30. Six out of those players are MS Dhoni, Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh will definitely be the part of the playing eleven and barring Dhoni (who is a wicket keeper) everyone else will pull back the Indian fielding.

A good T20 team need very young players in the side and India had six players under 23 in the 2007 side. In the 2012 squad no Indian player from the 15 member squad is below 23.  
It is true that they have the ability of making it up with their batting or bowling, but isn’t age the main criteria for the retirement of Ganguly, Dravid and Laxman.

MS Dhoni will know that if he negotiates the age problem, his team can go the distance once again.


By Indian Sports News Network