In a heart-wrenching finale to the ODI World Cup 2023, India found themselves on the losing side against a relentless Australian team. As the cricketing world grapples with the outcome, it becomes imperative to delve into the intricate details that contributed to India’s downfall.
The cricketing fraternity had eagerly awaited the clash between India and Australia in the World Cup 2023 final. However, the post-match analysis reveals a tapestry of reasons that played a role in India’s inability to secure the coveted title. Let’s unravel the multifaceted factors behind their defeat.
Top 10 Major Factors Why India Lost the ICC World Cup 2023 Final Against Australia
1. Mismatched Tactics on Ahmedabad’s Slower Pitch
The stage was set in Ahmedabad, with the pitch proving to be slower and drier than anticipated. This unexpected condition played a crucial role in shaping the narrative of the match. Unfortunately, India’s strategic approach faltered, especially in the second innings when the pitch underwent a transformation, catching the Men in Blue off guard.
2. Tactical Mastery of the Australian Team
Australia’s meticulous planning and flawless execution emerged as a defining factor in the final. Captain Pat Cummins showcased astute leadership by making timely bowling changes, effectively containing the Indian batters even after their initial surge.
3. Boundary Drought and Middle-Order Struggles
The initial promise shown by India waned as the boundaries dried up after the first 10 overs. The formidable duo of Virat Kohli and KL Rahul failed to synchronize their efforts effectively. The dismissal of Shreyas Iyer after the PowerPlay forced India into a period of consolidation, disrupting the flow of runs and hindering their ability to post a competitive score.
4. India’s Failure to Forge Big Partnerships
A glaring weakness in India’s performance was the inability to build substantial partnerships. Despite a promising half-century stand between Kohli and Rahul, there was a conspicuous absence of significant collaborations, limiting India’s overall total.
5. Pitch Conditions Favored Australia’s Decision
The slow and criticized pitch in Ahmedabad played into Australia’s hands. Opting to bowl first, Australia capitalized on the pitch’s evolving nature, which became more conducive to batting as the game progressed. India’s decision to bat first, despite winning the toss, proved to be a curious one.
6. Collapse in the Middle Order
At a crucial juncture, India’s typically dependable middle order experienced a setback. Essential players such as Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav, entrusted with the responsibility of finishing the innings on a high note, failed to make significant contributions. Additionally, KL Rahul’s cautious innings, devoid of any daring risks, further compounded the team’s challenges.
7. Aggressive Batting Approach by Australia
Australia’s top-order, led by Travis Head, displayed an aggressive batting strategy from the outset. This approach, coupled with Head’s robust innings, transformed what seemed to be a challenging chase into a more manageable task for the Australians.
8. Impact of Dew on Spinners and Lack of Turn
Dew emerged as a significant factor, impacting the effectiveness of Indian spinners. The wet ball deprived the spinners of the turn they desired, allowing Australian batters, especially Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne, to build a substantial partnership.
9. Strategic Missteps in Captaincy
Rohit Sharma’s captaincy faced scrutiny, particularly for the oversight of not positioning slips for spinners during crucial phases. This lapse in strategy missed opportunities to break vital Australian partnerships, contributing to India’s loss of momentum.
10. Subpar Shot Selection and Fielding
The downfall of key players like Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli could be attributed to subpar shot selection after promising starts. India’s fielding, in stark contrast to Australia’s exceptional standards, added pressure on the Indian team, exacerbating their challenges.
Rohit Sharma’s Reflections on India’s World Cup Final Defeat
In the aftermath of India’s heart-wrenching loss to Australia in the World Cup final, Rohit Sharma, at the post-match presentation, expressed his sentiments with a phrase that echoed determination and resilience: “We tried everything.“
Reflecting on the Game
Rohit acknowledged the team’s shortcomings, admitting, “We were not good enough today.” Despite the defeat, he conveyed pride in the team’s overall performance throughout the tournament, emphasizing that the day just wasn’t destined to be theirs.
The Winning Streak Halted
India’s formidable winning streak, encompassing nine league games and a triumphant semi-final in Mumbai, came to an abrupt halt in the final showdown. Facing a challenging pitch in Ahmedabad, India, asked to bat first, struggled for momentum and concluded their innings at 240.
Rohit revealed the team’s discussions around the 25-30 overs mark when KL Rahul and Virat Kohli were at the crease. The intention was to build a substantial total of 270-280, but the inability to forge a significant partnership resulted in a below-par score.
Drawing a parallel between India’s 67-run partnership and Australia’s subsequent 192-run collaboration after losing three early wickets, Rohit emphasized the significance of stitching a big partnership in a high-stakes final.
Efforts to Turn the Tide
Expressing the team’s relentless effort, Rohit noted, “Again, we tried everything we could.” Despite early breakthroughs, Australia’s Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne formed a substantial partnership, ultimately putting India “completely out of the game.“
Dew Factor and Pitch Conditions
Addressing the impact of dew, Rohit acknowledged that the pitch played better under the lights, but he refused to use it as an excuse. The decision to bat first was intentional, and India recognized the challenge of putting up a substantial total under the lights.
In the culmination of a year-long effort to reshape the mindset of the batters, with Rohit leading the charge, the team management finds disappointment in their exit. It happened under circumstances where they seemed constrained, compelled to play with the handbrake on and the keys of the car tossed aside. Rahul’s shot selection lacked forcefulness, and Kohli refrained from attacking the spin. The question arises: did they make a sufficient effort to combat the challenging conditions, or was the opposition simply superior on that particular day?
The broader inquiry revolves around the sustainability of the commendable batting approach in a seven-batter ODI setup. While it undoubtedly holds merit, even within a team boasting remarkable batting talent, such a lineup remains susceptible to occasional setbacks. For India, that unfortunate day unfolded today. It’s crucial to acknowledge that one defeat doesn’t render them a subpar team, yet, conversely, that single loss doesn’t bestow upon them the title of World Champions either.