Any team in any sport has two perspectives: Proactive & Reactive. Being proactive is when you judge what’s coming next and make changes according to it. England has done this. England is proactive. When they thought that the batting department isn’t doing well, they removed Sibley and brought in Malan. When they saw that Jimmy Anderson is doing well, then despite the workload, they kept giving him long spells.
It feels that India’s perspective, India’s strategy is different. Because even India has faced problems in all sections. Whether it’s the batting department or even the bowling department, it feels that India’s approach is more rigid. If they have decided on a strategy, they stick to it without making any changes whatsoever, even if the strategy is not working out.
India’s decision-making too extreme
Having one strategy, a “one-strategy-fits-all” isn’t a sensible approach. The team should focus on the process and with each step of the process, they should try to adapt themselves. They should improvise. Also, India’s decision-making seems to be too extreme. It’s either this way or that way but never a combination of the two. In the WTC Final too, knowing that the match will be played in England, India continued with their regular squad. India continued with the bowlers and the strategy that brought them success in India and Australia, even New Zealand. However, the conditions in England vary too much. In England, swing bowlers outperform seam bowlers. Still, India didn’t make any changes according to it.
India also continued with two spinners believing that they have brought them success before, so they will do it again. It was only later after failing that India realized that such a combination won’t work in English conditions. But then, again, India went too extreme and then focused only on the pacers, without giving a single chance to Ashwin.
Having 5 specialist bowlers in the playing squad is a brilliant idea. But they need to balance it with the batting too. Also, each bowler’s approach has been either too attacking or too defensive. If there’s a situation where the opposition team has built up a partnership, India should try to set a defensive field to stop the flow of runs and wait for the batsman to give away his wicket in the process.
All in all, India’s decision-making has been too extreme, either too aggressive or too defensive. There’s no balance.