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T20 World Cup 2021

‘It shouldn’t be of any consequence’ – India bowling coach questions unfair toss advantage in T20 World Cup

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

India’s bowling coach Bharat Arun believes that the toss has played too much of a role at the 2021 T20 World Cup and that India’s players were at the receiving end of the ‘unfair’ disadvantage.

Whilst Arun emphasised that India had underperformed in this World Cup, he also believed that the toss has had too much of an impact in the tournament held in the UAE and Oman.

“I’m not trying to give any excuses but the trend this World Cup has been the team that wins the toss has a big advantage, especially when you’re playing in the Dubai Stadium,” he said. “So the wicket kind of eases out when you come out to bowl the second time. But no excuses, we should have batted better, and also the first match, we had a chance to defend our total but we looked a little below par.”

The toss is believed to play an even greater role during night matches where dew will often settle on the outfield at around the halfway point of the match, making conditions much harder to bowl in. The Dubai stadium, which Arun references as being a venue where the toss is particularly important, will be hosting the semi-final between Pakistan and Australia as well as the final. Both matches will be played at night.

“…I’m not trying to give any excuses,” Arun continued. “But I think the toss plays a very very vital role, which I think shouldn’t – the toss shouldn’t be of any consequence. But here, the toss gives very undue advantage and there’s a huge change between batting in the first innings and batting in the second innings. That shouldn’t be the case in a very short format like this.”

40 games have been played so far in this World Cup of which 25 have been won by the chasing side. In total, the side who have won the toss have opted to bowl on 28 occasions.

Arun also spoke on the issue of India’s players potentially being affected by fatigue given the intense schedule their players have faced this year.

“Being on the road for six months is a huge ask,” Arun said. “The players haven’t gone home since they had a short break after the last [2020] IPL, and they have been in a bubble for six months. And I think that takes a huge toll. So specific to your question – maybe a short break between the IPL and the World Cup would have done a lot of good for these boys.”

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