India fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar said it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact reason for India’s inability to win an ICC trophy since 2013. However, Bhuvnewshwar maintained they have lost crucial knockout matches due to ‘unfortunate events or incident’.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar was part of the MS Dhoni-led team that won the Champions Trophy in 2013 which was also the last time India won an ICC trophy. While they had won 3 ICC titles, including the 2011 World Cup, between 2007 and 2013, the world title has eluded India in the recent past.
India, under MS Dhoni, lost the World Cup 2015 semi-final to Australia. Virat Kohli’s men were handed a 180-run thrashing in the final of 2017 Champions Trophy while they were ousted in the semi-final from last year’s World Cup after an agonising defeat to New Zealand.
In 2014 and 2016 T20 World Cups, India reached the final stages only to crash out without the elusive title.
India’s top-order failed miserably in both the Champions Trophy final in 2017 and the World Cup semi-final in 2019.
In fact, India have been error-prone in high-octane knockout matches at major tournaments in the recent past.
“The last we won was the Champions Trophy in 2013. And since then, there have been only 3-4 ICC tournaments and we have made it to the semis or the finals about 2-3 times,” Bhuvneshwar Kumar said in the latest episode of ESPNcricinfo Cricket Baazi.
“In the 2015 World Cup we lost to Australia in the semi-final. And in 2019 World Cup, it was bad luck. An early loss of three top-order batsmen cost us the game. It rarely happens that in a match after dismissing the opposition for under 250, you are get bowled out.
“In that entire World Cup, Rohit Sharma had scored five or six centuries, K.L. Rahul was in good form, Virat Kohli played as always and we had MS Dhoni as well in the team.
“Even in the 2017 Champions Trophy final, things changed after Jasprit Bumrah’s no-ball. It’s not like we’ve had a one-sided loss or we went down without a fight.
“We’ve always lost due to an unfortunate event or incident. Although, the 2017 Champions Trophy final was a one-sided loss where they outplayed us.
“And it’s difficult to pin-point the exact reason for the loss. But losing these knockout matches masks the fact that we actually played very well through those tournaments.”
Both captain Virat Kohli and head coach Ravi Shastri have pointed their fingers at “45 minutes of bad play” for their exit from the 2019 World Cup. India lost only one match in the group stages and topped the table but failed in the semi-final against New Zealand when chasing a par total of 240.
Speaking to India Today last year, Ravi Shastri said India will chase the World Cup title and that it’s a ‘bloody obsession’ for him.
“Huge (ICC tournament obsession). I am a winner man! I have been part of a World Cup-winning team. I have been part of a World Championship team that won in 1985. I am a coach of an Indian Test team that has been No. 1 for the last 3-4 years. I like to win. Yes. That one event. I will chase that with my team,” Ravi Shastri said.