The last time India won an ICC competition was the Champions Trophy in 2013, when Mahendra Singh Dhoni served as captain. India has been waiting a long time for an ICC championship. In the three-match T20I series against the Asia Cup winners Sri Lanka that begins on Tuesday at the Wankhede Stadium, Indian captain Hardik Pandya has one goal: to win the World Cup.
“To win the World Cup for my country. Unfortunately, we couldn’t make it in 2022 but we want to do it in a better way this year,” Pandya said while responding to a query at a press conference.
India lost to England by 10 wickets in ICC T20 World Cup 2022 semi-final dashing hopes of millions of supporters. India also performed poorly in Asia Cup held from August to September last year and failed to reach the final. The team lost the ODI series to Bangladesh 2-1.
“I know the only language that is hard work. Injuries are not in my hand but I believe in the process. 2022 was individually my best year. We missed World Cup but that’s part and parcel of the game. My goal is to help the team win multi-nation tournaments,” said Hardik Pandya.
Indian limited overs teams over the years have done well in bilaterals but have failed to replicate that performance in multi-nation tournaments. India also doesn’t have too many matches to play ahead of the IPL 2023 which means Hardik Pandya doesn’t have too many games to give a chance to youngsters which makes things difficult for team management to get the right combination.
“Obviously the plans are set. We are looking forward to play the certain way which we did. Before IPL only six games are there. So, we don’t have much time to do a lot of things but going forward we will keep creating New plan and see which are the plans we will be sticking, which is working for us and going forward just make sure that we give ample opportunity,” Pandya said.
Dasun Shanaka will lead Sri Lanka’s T20I and ODI squads against India, while Kusal Mendis will play the role of his deputy in ODIs. The Sri Lanka’s tour comprises of three T20Is and as many ODIs. Sri Lanka will be touring India from January 3 to January 15 for three T20Is and three ODIs.
The first match of the series will be held on January 3, 2023, in Mumbai while the second and third will take place on January 5 and 7 in Pune and Rajkot respectively. The ODIs will be held in Guwahati, Kolkata and Trivandrum on January 10, 12 and 15 respectively. Earlier on Tuesday BCCI announced India’s squads for the upcoming white-ball series against Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka’s squad for India tour: Dasun Shanaka (C), Pathum Nissanka, Avishka Fernando, Sadeera Samarawickrama, Kusal Mendis (vc for ODIs), Bhanuka Rajapaksa (only for T20Is), Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Wanindu Hasaranga (vc for T20Is), Ashen Bandara, Maheesh Theekshana, Jeffrey Vandersay (only for ODIs), Chamika Karunaratne, Dilshan Madushanka, Kasun Rajitha, Nuwanidu Fernando (only for ODIs), Dunith Wellalage, Pramod Madushan, Lahiru Kumara and Nuwan Thushara (only for T20Is) .
India’s squad for Sri Lanka T20Is: Hardik Pandya (Captain), Ishan Kishan (wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Suryakumar Yadav (VC), Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Sanju Samson, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Harshal Patel, Umran Malik, Shivam Mavi and Mukesh Kumar.