Kapil Dev wax statue launched, ex-captain backs India to win Champions Trophy | cricket | Hindustan Times
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Kapil Dev wax statue launched, ex-captain backs India to win Champions Trophy

Kapil Dev believes that India has the capability to defend their ICC Champions Trophy title but their biggest obstacle will be the hosts England.

cricket Updated: May 11, 2017 18:55 IST
Sandip Sikdar
Kapil Dev at the unveiling of his wax statue at New Delhi’s Madame Tussauds Museum.
Kapil Dev at the unveiling of his wax statue at New Delhi’s Madame Tussauds Museum.(HT Photo)

Kapil Dev has given a thumbs up to the India squad selected for the ICC Champions Trophy, saying the defending champions have what it takes to win the title the second time in a row.

The former all-rounder added that hosts England will be the toughest team in the June 1-18 tournament that will be played in London, Birmingham and Cardiff.

“The Indian line-up looks good. They have done well in the last 5-7 years but it depends on how well they apply themselves on that day. We have the team and the capability to win. The way they are playing, India can definitely defend the title,” Kapil said here on Thursday.

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“I just hope no player gets injured. Apart from that, I do not see any reason why India cannot win the Champions Trophy. But how they maintain themselves and put pressure on opponents — that will be the key.”

India are vying to become only the second team after Australia to win back-to-back Champions Trophy titles. They had clinched the prestigious ICC tournament four years back by defeating England in the final at Edgbaston by five runs.

This time around, the title holders have been grouped with Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka in the 50-over event that will be held in England and Wales for a second time in a row.

“The opposition is very, very tough. The good part is that we won there last time, which is an advantage. But it is also about which team builds pressure on others during those two weeks,” India’s first World Cup winning captain said while unveiling his own Madame Tussauds wax statue.

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“You cannot rule out any team but England will be very tough. They are playing at home, their team is quite good and they know the conditions better than anybody else.”

Asked if he thinks any player will be the key for India, the 58-year-old said, “It is not about one bowler or batsman, it is the team that wins. Someone can be the lead bowler or batsman but all have to chip in collectively as a team, only then can they win.”

Kapil, who once was the leading wicket-taker in Tests with 434 scalps, was also quite pleased with the selection panel, adding that the MSK Prasad-led committee has done a “good job”.

“If they would have gone for a young team then you (media) would have said why seniors were ignored. So it is unfair for me to criticise the selectors. They have done a good job. My opinion may be different but it is not my job to criticise them,” said Kapil.