India keep it light to deal with the pressure of a World Cup

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India keep it light to deal with the pressure of a World Cup


When they cross the line at the Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday, India will face the pressure of a World Cup semi-final head-on, perhaps a heightened version of the feeling that has enveloped them throughout this tournament. While this pressure is inevitable once they take the field, India have done their best to minimize it when the team is away from the ground.

On the eve of the semi-final against New Zealand, Rohit Sharma detailed the efforts the team management has made to create a relaxed atmosphere, since the 2022 World T20 in Australia.

“We started in Australia in the last World Cup, we started there the same way,” Rohit said. “We arrived in Australia 10 or 15 days early. And we had set up a small camp in Perth for seven or eight days. There is an island near Perth, we went there. We stayed away from cricket. Whenever we have a chance, we try to do activities like “That one. To keep the team atmosphere light. It’s not like it’s only happening in the last two years. It used to happen before too. But now, I don’t know. I don’t know if it’s more visible now.”

This has continued into this World Cup, where the team’s off-field activities have even included the players putting on a fashion show, the finer details of which Rohit refused to go into.

“Our conscious effort has been on this, so that the team environment does not change based on the results,” he said. “We have to create the environment that the team needs and that is mandatory. And this cannot be done by one or two guys. It is important that all the guys come together, including the support staff.

“So, since we were in Dharamsala, we had a break of five or six days there. We stayed in Dharamsala for two days. We did a lot of team activity there. We did a fashion show there, but no one knows about it.” …It’s good that no one knows.

“So, all this effort, the team atmosphere that we always talk about, this is the environment where we like to be very relaxed. And all the guys really like this. Because you know that when you go on the field, there will be pressure, pressure of performance, pressure to win the game. That cannot be changed. Because once you get to the ground, it depends on each person how they want to carry it forward.

“But before that, we have done everything we can to facilitate the team atmosphere. The team atmosphere is very good. It is very relaxed. So this is a good thing.”

On an individual level, Rohit said having his family with him during the tournament has allowed him to take his mind off cricket whenever possible.

“I have a family with me, so my mind goes from here to there, which is a very good thing,” he said. “When I go to my hotel room, we stay completely away from cricket. We talk about a lot of other things. It’s a good thing. You think about cricket a lot, yes, but when you have time, when you have the opportunity to “If you don’t think, then You shouldn’t think. Because even if you think all day, what will happen? That’s why it’s important to think about something else.”

One factor contributing to the relaxed atmosphere in the locker room, Rohit suggested, is that the safeties players have enjoyed having clear roles in the team and the team management’s faith in their ability to perform those roles even in times of shortage. .

“I just think that as a captain, if you have decided that this is how you want to play as a team, then there has to be clarity among the team,” Rohit said. “And then if a certain player wants to go out and play the way you want him to play, then you have to back that player to the hilt. And that’s what we’ve done.

“We’ve backed certain players because we’ve given them a different role. And if they play that role, great, but even if they don’t, which won’t happen in every game, we have to back that player and say we support you.” That’s something I believe in and I want to do it as much as I can on my part and I have to give credit to Rahul too. [Dravid] bhai Also, accept the idea of ​​not changing too much when the player doesn’t follow that plan.

“So yes, that’s something we’ve held firm to since the beginning. And we’ll continue to do that even in the future as well. But yes, that’s something I think is very important. And giving freedom to every player.” “Go out there and play your role. That’s also another important aspect of the game and how you want to play as a team. So those are the two things: role clarity and giving guys that freedom and going out there and expressing themselves.” themselves.”