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India are the true one-man team, not West Indies

Over the years West Indies have been rather fairly labelled as a one-man team. From Brian Lara in the Test arena to currently Chris Gayle in the Twenty20 format, there is the assumption that if the concerned player doesn’t perform the team stand no chance of winning. This over-reliance on one player was rather true for Lara in the late nineties (barring Shivnarine Chanderpaul), it is not so much for Gayle curently.

Gayle is an exceptional, and probably the best ever, T20 talent. But as the Windies have proved in the World T20, he is far from being their only path to victory. After Gayle’s heroics against England, Andre Fletcher took the mantle in the chase against Sri Lanka while the bowlers did the same against South Africa.

However it was in the semi-final against India that the men from the Caribbean proved to be much more than just Gayle. Johnson Charles and Lendl Simmons in particular replicated Virat Kohli’s heroics which proved that the one-man team label is more applicable to India rather than West Indies.

If the World T20 tournament has proven one thing, it’s that results for India are merely dependent on how well Kohli plays on that particular day. Of course, it’s all relative to the performance of the opposition team as well.

Kohli has been India’s best player at the World T20 by a distance – in fact, he is likely to be voted as the Player of the Tournament as well. MS Dhoni, Ashish Nehra and Jasprit Bumrah too receive passable grades but the rest of the side haven’t stepped up to the plate. The openers, Shikhar Dhawana and Rohit Sharma, flattered to deceive, Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh have been lame ducks and Hardik Pandya seems to be all hype, no substance.

It was a pitiful sight to see Virat Kohli after he bowled the last over against West Indies. He looked like a man who had given it his all but was left stranded by his teammates. And that was exactly how India’s World T20 campaign played out.

 

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