NEW YORK WEATHER

“These guys are physically and mentally drained, six months in a bubble and we would have ideally liked a bigger gap between the IPL and the World Cup,” outgoing head coach Ravi Shastri said in an interview broadcast by Star Sports just before the start of India’s last game of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup against Namibia; a game that was of no consequence as Virat Kohli and Co had no chance of making the semi-finals.

Shastri further added: “It’s when the big games come and when the pressure hits you – you are not that switched on as you should be. And it’s not an excuse. We take defeat because we are not scared of losing. Because in trying to win, you will lose a game. Here we didn’t try to win because that X-factor was missing.”

Shastri was only echoing the thoughts of bowling coach Bharat Arun, pacer Jasprit Bumrah, skipper Kohli, former India skipper Kapil Dev and former India cricketer Madan Lal.

And all these opinions, now expressed freely, point towards the need for a break before the World Cup; the need to have gotten some rest – both physically and mentally. Any rational person would agree with the assessment. It is not an excuse. It is reality as it stands….

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