T20 World Cup 2021: “Please pause and think that all these games were played in a bio-secure bubble” – Gautam Gambhir urges fans to think before chastising Indian players 

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Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir appealed to fans not to be harsh on the Indian players following their elimination from the 2021 T20 World Cup. Team India could not finish in the top two spots of their group and will miss out on the knockout stage of an ICC tournament for the first time in 9 years.

The Men In Blue stumbled against heavyweight members of their group and will now play a dead rubber contest against Namibia before departing from the UAE. Gambhir brought the fact that the players were playing in strict bio-bubbles and asked the Indian fans to think before acting in a rash manner. Writing in his column for the Times Of India, Gambhir explained:

“Before we take them to the cleaners, please pause and think that all these games were played in a bio-secure bubble.But players were training at home, taking flights, quarantining in a hotel room, living a bubbled life to play and entertain you and me. Yes, they are paid handsomely and it’s a professional world out there…blah…blah..blah… How about just saying, “well tried, boys.”

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Jasprit Bumrah had cited mental fatigue from constant bio-bubbles as a huge factor behind India’s misfortunes early on in the tournament. Moreover, bowling coach B Arun also mentioned that a short break after the culmination of the IPL would have benefitted the players. He thinks it would have helped in terms of being in the right state of mind for the tournament.

Is there a lesson there for the organizers? : Gambhir

Gambhir also questioned the tournament’s format following claims of differences in quality between the two groups drawn in the Super 12s. The former left-handed batsman questioned whether the ICC should make the T20 World Cup a league format rather than round-robin. Gambhir added:

“Is there a lesson there for the organisers? Should the format be a round-robin, where every team plays each other, rather than have two groups?”

The last edition of the 50-over World Cup was league based where each team competed against each other once, before the top four teams qualified for the semifinals.

A number of formats have been employed by the ICC for the T20 World Cup ever since its inception in 2007. The current format began in the 2014 edition, with the only difference in 2021 being the addition of a team to the final groups, taking it from 5 to 6.

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