T20 World Cup 2021: India needs to keep mental fatigue aside and think positively- Irfan Pathan

Representing the country is a big honor, and India should keep that in mind | Getty Images

Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan has highlighted how the Virat Kohli-led Indian cricket team has endured a hectic schedule for a long time and while living in the bio-bubble isn’t easy, he mentioned that things are the same for all the teams.

Pathan further said that every team is going through this situation in this COVID-19 era, not only Team India, hence it is unfair to blame the hectic schedule and bio-bubble life for the team’s poor performance in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 in the UAE.

India has lost both their first two games against Pakistan and New Zealand in the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup 2021, and now their chances of making it to the semi-finals are also slim.

Ahead of the Men in Blue’s next game against Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday, November 3, Pathan said that they need to keep mental fatigue aside and forget about their last games and show the world what they are with positive intent, as they are representing their country at the global stage.

Pathan said on Star Sports’ show ‘Game Plan’: “Look, the Indian team has been touring non-stop, first WTC, then the England tour – which was a long tour – then the whole IPL, and now coming into the World Cup is not easy for anyone. But, most of the teams are in the same boat as well.

So, you need to keep that aside and just keep thinking positively, because I think, in the two years of the pandemic a lot of people lost their jobs as well. So, you need to think from the perspective, that you are definitely working but you are representing your country as well, that’s the biggest pride moment for anyone.”

He added, “So you need to think like that. I know it’s not easy. We are all human. We think in a certain way, and we all get homesick. In the series which is coming up after the World Cup, there will be a rotation policy for sure because you don’t want to keep playing all the time, as you are human and not a machine at the end of the day. I want them to keep focusing on the games and make sure whatever game you are playing, remember you are representing the country, and that’s the biggest pride one can have.”

In their last game against New Zealand, India had brought in Ishan Kishan as an opener while Rohit Sharma batted at number three with Virat Kohli dropping to number four, but nothing worked on their way and Pathan said India must get the batting combination right first.

Rohit Sharma | Getty

The commentator explained, “First of all, get the batting combination right, get the proper guys at the proper position like Rohit Sharma batting up the order, and then once he gets set then it’s a different thing. With the Abu Dhabi pitch, you get more turns but the good thing is the pitch has more pace as well which means it will come nicely onto the bat and this is what the Indian team needs to be aware of.

They don’t need to worry about what happened in Dubai, they don’t need to be worried about what’s happening in Sharjah as far the pitch is concerned where the ball doesn’t come onto the bat.”

Pathan signed off by saying, “It’s a good cricketing pitch, so you need to enjoy that bounce, and I think guys like Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, and Virat Kohli will cherish this and they will enjoy, and if they just believe in their own timing spend a bit more time and get the opening sorted then they don’t need to worry about the quality spinners that we were talking about, they can face any spinner any fast bowler but they just need to spend more time.”