Washington, Tilak offer prayers at Simhachalam Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple ahead of opening clash against Australia | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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Washington, Tilak offer prayers at Simhachalam Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple ahead of opening clash against Australia

ANI |
Nov 23, 2023 02:18 PM IST

Ahead of India's opening clash against Australia in the first game of the five-match T20I series, Washington Sundar and Tilak Verma visited and offered prayers at Simhachalam Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple in Visakhapatnam on Thursday.

Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) [India], November 23 (ANI): Ahead of India's opening clash against Australia in the first game of the five-match T20I series, Washington Sundar and Tilak Verma visited and offered prayers at Simhachalam Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple in Visakhapatnam on Thursday.

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After losing the ODI World Cup final against Australia last Sunday, the Men in Blue will face the Baggy Greens in the T20 format. Ahead of the opening game, Tilak and Washington visited the temple and also took part in a special ritual during the time that they spent there.

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Suryakumar Yadav will be leading the Men in Blue in the absence of Rohit Sharma and Hardik Pandya. Ahead of the game he spoke on the significance of the series in light of the upcoming T20 World Cup in the West Indies and USA.

"I think what I told them when I met them in the afternoon was let's be very selfless when we go onto the field. I am a guy who doesn't think much of personal milestones ahead of team goals. Hence, I told them to keep the team's interests first and then whatever comes after that, they can take their call. I have played with them a lot of times during the IPL and a few India games and they know how I function, and it wasn't that difficult to communicate my thoughts. We are excited about the series," Suryakumar said ahead of the first T20I against Australia, here on Wednesday.

"I think keeping the T20 World Cup in mind, the games we play till then are very important. My message to them was very clear: just be fearless and do whatever it takes to help the team. They have been doing all this in the IPL and have played a lot of domestic cricket recently. They are in good form as I have heard from our support staff. I told them only one thing - enjoy your time in the middle, do the same things and don't try to do something different," he added.

This series will also mark the return of Axar Patel for the first time since the Asia Cup. He was initially named in the World Cup squad but failed to recover in time.

India's squad: Suryakumar Yadav (Captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad (Vice-captain), Ishan Kishan, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (Wk), Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Shivam Dubey, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar. (ANI)

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