Did India fall short of expectations at the T20 World Cup?
The T20 World Cup is one of the cricket world’s biggest events. Every two years, 16 teams from across the world compete to be crowned world champions. Despite only being held since 2007, the tournament is regarded as prestigious and is a major event in the global cricket calendar.
The 2022 edition of the T20 World Cup was held in Australia in October and November. The 16 participating teams took part in 45 matches, each vying to lift the coveted trophy. India is a country with a rich cricketing history and tradition, with cricket often regarded as the most popular sport in the country. How did India perform at the T20 World Cup? Did they fall short of expectations?
India in previous T20 World Cups
The first T20 World Cup was held in South Africa in 2007. A total of 12 teams took part in this inaugural event, competing for the trophy over the course of 27 matches.
India entered the tournament with a new captain and a refreshed team, keen to make up for disappointments in previous competitions. India found themselves in Group D with Pakistan and Scotland, beating both to secure promotion to the next round of the competition.
Despite losing once to New Zealand in the next round, India performed well and beat England and South Africa to progress to the knockout stages. In the semi-final, India beat Australia and found themselves heading to the final where they faced great rivals Pakistan. After a thrilling contest, India won the final by five runs and were crowned world champions.
Since then, India have failed to reclaim the trophy. They were runners up in 2014 and semi-finalists in 2016, but otherwise have found themselves knocked out at early stages of the tournament.
India in the 2022 T20 World Cup
The 2022 edition of the T20 World Cup kicked off on October 16 at the Kardinia Park venue in Geelong.
India are always strong contenders, and as such are favored by the odds in the run-up to events. If you’re looking to bet on cricket in SA, it’s always worth keeping an eye on India.
India automatically qualified as they progressed past the group stage in the previous year’s tournament and were placed into Group 2 of the second round alongside Pakistan, South Africa, the Netherlands, Bangladesh, and Zimbabwe.
They recorded four wins and one defeat in their group, losing only to South Africa, and topped their group to head into the semi-finals. India faced England in the semi-final, which took place at the Adelaide Oval. Unfortunately, India were beaten by 10 wickets and knocked out of the tournament, with England beating Pakistan by five wickets in the final and lifting the World Cup trophy.
Were India expected to do better?
Cricket is often regarded as India’s national sport. For this reason, an enormous amount of pressure is put upon the national team to perform well and bring silverware back home. India produces some excellent cricketers, and their teams are often ranked among the top five in the three formats of international cricket.
However, many Indian cricket fans feel that, while India generally perform well at international tournaments, they can often demonstrate a tendency to succumb to defeat at the later stages of competitions, falling at the final hurdle and failing to get their hands on trophies.
Indian cricket fans are fervent in their support. Losses are often not received well, and fan backlash akin to that seen in football has been seen in response to poor results. However, Indian cricket fans are dedicated followers, and will regularly turn out in massive numbers to show support for their national team.
The nation is cricket-mad, and the value of Indian cricket backs this up. The IPL is valued at US$6 billion, an incredible sum that reflects the passion the country has for the sport. Despite this, they have not dominated the sport like many would expect them to and like their fans demand.
India reached the semi-final of the 2022 T20 World Cup, which is certainly an achievement in and of itself. However, for a country so steeped in cricket history, their fans demand more of the national team, and fully expect India to be reaching and winning the finals of major international tournaments more than they are.