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Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri Reveal Team India's Objectives Ahead of Home Season

The results are important, but coach Ravi Shastri has previously acknowledged that the focus will be on grooming players for the shortest format of the game.

Cricketnext Staff |September 15, 2019, 6:49 PM IST
Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri Reveal Team India's Objectives Ahead of Home Season

After a semi-final exit at the 50-over World Cup, the Virat Kohli-led India are planning to take the T20 World Cup in 2020 by storm.

India will play 17 T20I matches before the next IPL as they prepare for the marquee tournament, and begin a three-match T20I series against South Africa on September 15, also the first visitors of the home season.

They've already begun their preparations with a 3-0 whitewash of West Indies in West Indies, their next challenge is a three-match series at home against South Africa.

“There are a lot of T20s and Tests before the T20 World Cup next year and we are pushing youngsters into the system at every possible chance because it is important to finalise on a system. This also gives you an idea as to who are the players who can take the philosophy of the team forward. The focus is on selecting players that can take the team vision forward and maintain it,” Kohli said in an interview shared by BCCI.tv ahead of the first T20I against South Africa in Dharamshala.

The results are important, but coach Ravi Shastri has previously acknowledged that the focus will be on grooming players for the shortest format of the game.

“We are clear about the fact that the youngsters must take their chances. When I broke into the team I did not get 15 chances, you get five maybe and you have to take it because that’s the level we are playing at. So those coming into the team must have that mental make-up.”

“I knew in my head that I have to make the most of the three or four chances to and I never thought that I should get so many chances to ease into the team.”

Kohli, who believes that striking a balance between experimenting with youth and playing solely to win is not only a challenge but also a must, acknowledged that the team was happy to be back in their own backyard for the home season.

“Last year was hectic and it was tough to stay away from home for so long. But I am very happy with how we played on the road against so many different oppostions. It is great to be back for the home season. It has a different feeling of belonging and connect.”

Recently retained in his position of coach of the Indian team, Shastri agreed with his skipper and said that the experiences on the road will help the players at home.

“It is nice when you play many teams and what will help is the hard yards you’ve put in last year. Living out of a suitcase in India and outside is like chalk and cheese. We were out for more than 200 days and that experience of playing many teams will come in handy. At home you’re familiar with the conditions, but those oppositions will be back and the experience will count,” Shastri said. ​

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