As the dust settles on another ODI World Cup, the future of India’s veteran stars remains uncertain, with several players now in their mid-thirties. The Indian team management faces the crucial decision of whether to gradually phase out these experienced players and build a new team for the future or continue to rely on their expertise, keeping in mind the upcoming 2024 T20 World Cup and the ongoing World Test Championship cycle.
Several former cricketers believe that seasoned players like Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli should still be part of India’s plans for the next T20 World Cup, despite neither of them having played a T20I since last year. Reports also suggest that Kohli has requested a break from the white-ball leg of India’s South Africa tour, scheduled to begin next month.
Batting legend Sachin Tendulkar, however, remains a staunch supporter of Kohli, asserting that he still has a lot to offer Indian cricket. During the ODI World Cup, Kohli surpassed Tendulkar’s record to become the all-time leading century-maker in the format.
“I have seen Virat even before he played for India, and I have seen him grow from a youngster,” Sachin Tendulkar told ESPNCricinfo.
“And then the same player goes on to achieve such wonderful things for the country. I am so pleased that he has been able to do that, and I am very sure that the journey has not stopped. There is a lot of cricket left in him and a lot of runs left in him. A lot of hunger and desire to achieve more for the country,” he added.
Expressing his pride in the record being retained by an Indian player, Tendulkar stated, “I am so happy that the record continues to stay with India. I have always said that the record belongs to India, and still does.”
Virat Kohli concluded the ODI World Cup with over 700 runs and was deservedly named player of the tournament.