India's disastrous defeat against England in the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup in Australia on Thursday has become the talk of the nation, where cricket is attached to every corner. In the midst of sending a grave disappointment back to the country, the Indian players have shared a sense of distraught and when the current fleet is deeply trolled by the fans for such a loss, Indian team head coach Rahul Dravid had thrown light on where England had an advantage over India.
Dravid said that the experience the English players have gained by playing in the Big Bash League in Australia gave them more advantage to build a winning momentum. Big Bash League (BBL) is Australia's T20 league akin to the Indian Premier League (IPL) in India. On Thursday, speaking after the defeat, Rahul Dravid said, "An extensive experience of playing the Big Bash League in Australia contributed to Jos Buttler and Alex Hales' absolute dominance over India in the second T20 World Cup semifinal."
Batting first on Thursday, India put 168 runs on board and England openers Hales and Buttler had an effortless chase as they achieved the target in 16 overs by losing no wicket. In what has been termed a historical chase in T20, England entered the finals by defeating India and they will play against Pakistan in the summit clash. The distressed Indian team is preparing to come home without the title and ahead of leaving Australia, Dravid brought in the BBL and expressed that it has profoundly helped the English players.
Alex Hales has played the maximum amount of BBL in the current English fleet as he was in the playing squad of the Melbourne Renegades and Sydney Thunder. Rahul Dravid said that there is no doubt about the fact that England and a lot of their players have come here and played. He cited that it was certainly visible in this tournament, which added an advantage during the second semifinal on Thursday.
Jos Buttler has also played for Sydney Thunder and both the English openers had played at the Adelaide Oval, where the semifinal was held. On the other hand, the Indian players can't play in such overseas leagues due to a curb from the BCCI and Dravid asserted that the Indian players miss out on such opportunities of playing with the overseas teams. When asked if playing in the BBL would benefit the Indians, Dravid said, "I think it's very difficult for Indian cricket because a lot of these tournaments happen right in the peak of our season."
He further said, "I think it's a huge challenge for us. Yes, I think a lot of our boys maybe do miss out on the opportunities of playing in a lot of these leagues, but if you were to - it's really up to the BCCI to make that decision. The thing is it's BBL right in the middle of our season, and with the kind of demand, there would be for Indian players, if you allowed all of them to play in these leagues, we would not have a domestic cricket. Our domestic trophy, our Ranji trophy would be finished, and that would mean Test cricket would be finished".
"I know a lot of people talk about it, but we have to be very careful and we have to understand the challenges that Indian cricket faces or the BCCI would face in a situation like this", and citing that if Indian players are allowed in other leagues, the Indian Cricket would become like the beleaguered West Indies cricket. "It would certainly affect our Ranji trophy, it would affect Test cricket. Indian boys playing Test cricket is pretty important for the Test game, as well, I would think", he added.
Dravid admitted that on Thursday, the Indian team wasn't good enough against England and said, "Over the last year, we have played some good T20 cricket. Even in this tournament, I think we have had our moments. But on the day we were just not good enough here." "It's disappointing. Debacle, I am not sure is the right word, but disappointing certainly", he contended.
He said, "The ball didn't swing here probably as much as it has in other parts of Australia or in other conditions. Played a little bit into their hands, and class players like that, both Buttler and Hales, I thought their partnership was fantastic. I think they just put the pressure on us, never let that go, and even when our spinners came on a wicket that we thought we might be able to control the game."