'Yes, they are chokers. There is no denying it': Kapil Dev's unfiltered verdict after India's T20 World Cup defeat
When it comes to expressing his emotions or thoughts, Kapil Dev is as raw as they come. Following India's ouster from the tournament after a humiliating 10-wicket defeat has triggered Kapil to an extent that he labelled the Indian team with the dreaded 'C' word.
When it comes to expressing his emotions or thoughts, Kapil Dev is as raw as they come. Known for his blunt and to-the-point assessment, Kapil's statements have in the past created ripples, be it his message for Arjun Tendulkar comparing him to father Sachin, or comments on Virat Kohli when he was out of form. The former captain has been vocal with his opinions throughout the T20 World Cup, and India's ouster from the tournament after a humiliating 10-wicket defeat has triggered Kapil to an extent that he labelled Team India with the dreaded 'C' word. Given India's track record in ICC tournaments in the last nine years, Kapil said that while this team has brought plenty of laurels to the country by winning some major series, the fact that it always stumbles in ICC tournaments is extremely alarming and concerning
"See, now that the match is over, it is unfair that we should come down this hard on the Indian team. Yes, they did not play well and criticism is justified. But as far as today's match, all we can say is that England read the pitch better and played better cricket. I will not dwell into the details and won't go all out in bashing them because these are the same players who have gotten us a lot of respect in the past but yes, they are chokers. There is no denying it - after coming so close, they choke. I get it but I would still say that the team needs to look ahead. It's time for the youngster players to come forward and take charge," Kapil said on ABP News.
England, who had scraped through to reach the final, completely outplayed India reaching the target of 169 in just 16 overs with opener Alex Hales and captain Jos Buttler slamming unbeaten half-centuries. India were once again let down in the Powerplay, scoring just 38 runs for the loss of one wicket and finishing at a sub-par 168/6 on a surface where 190 was easily gettable. Later, whatever chance India had early on was wasted with Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Arshdeep straying with their line and lengths, a factor Kapil reckons went a long way in deciding the outcome of the match.
"All the stats and predictions we came up with have been proven wrong. England stamped their authority and put on a display of clean T20 cricket which we rarely see. Such a big win in a semifinal is rare, but full credit to England in every way. India swung he ball initially but bowled outside off. And if in the first 2 overs, 20 runs are scored, the bowlers' rhythm gets broken. Indian bowlers gave England room outside off and their batters took full advantage," mentioned the former India captain.
"I am not saying that Bhuvneshwar Kumar is a bad bowler but his line and length was average. Generally, you would say that 170 is a par total but then your bowlers have to bowl according to the target set and the pitch. After a slow start, we recovered well but with that bowling, it never looked that we could stop England."