Former Indian batsman Robin Uthappa has expressed his views on the Indian Premier League (IPL) and its impact on Team India’s performance in overseas conditions. After India’s recent loss in the second T20I against West Indies, Uthappa highlighted the lack of exposure outside of the IPL as a hindrance to Indian players’ performance in ICC tournaments.
Uthappa pointed out that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) does not permit active Indian players to participate in overseas T20 leagues. While this decision helps protect the IPL brand, Uthappa believes it hampers the players’ growth and performance in international tournaments, particularly in overseas conditions.
“Well, yeah, I certainly think the exposure at the IPL and I think it is a trick that India misses out, especially in the ICC tournaments, because we don’t play any other leagues in any other part of the world,” Robin Uthappa said.
He emphasized that overseas players have an advantage over Indian players in ICC tournaments because they have a lot of information about the Indian players due to their participation in the IPL. This was evident in the second T20I when West Indies’ Nicholas Pooran, an IPL teammate of Indian bowler Ravi Bishnoi, took advantage of his familiarity with Bishnoi’s bowling and smashed him for 18 runs in an over.
“And I think yes, it does well to protect the IPL as an entity, but I think it costs us at the ICC level. And I think those are the advantages that the accomplished players have against our Indian bowlers when they play them in bilateral or they play against them in ICC tournament.” Uthappa stated.
Uthappa highlighted that accomplished players from other countries gain valuable insights and experience by facing Indian players in the IPL. As a result, they are better prepared when they encounter the same players in bilateral series or ICC tournaments.
“They have had so much exposure against them in the nets and playing against them in the IPL for years 3,4,5,6 years. So you already know what the bowler does, you already know what the batter does. So you have a lot of information,” Robin Uthappa further added.
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The lack of exposure to overseas T20 leagues may be impacting India’s performances in white-ball cricket, as evident in their recent losses in the ODI series against Australia and West Indies and the ongoing T20I series against West Indies.
Despite the challenges, Team India will aim to bounce back in the remaining T20Is against West Indies and try to clinch the series. The third T20I is scheduled to be played on August 8 in Guyana, and India will be determined to keep their series hopes alive with a victory.