Aftermath of India's exit June 15, 2009

India need to work on playing the short stuff, Srikkanth admits

Cricinfo staff
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Kris Srikkanth, India's chairman of selectors, has said he believes the team is capable of bouncing back from its relatively early exit from the ICC Twenty20 World Cup but agrees the Indian batsmen need to work on facing short-pitched bowling,.

"Winning and losing are a part of the game. I have also been in teams that have won a World Cup and lost badly immediately afterwards, and then come back. I'm sure this team will come back," Srikkanth said in an interview to the Indian news channel CNN-IBN.

India's batsmen were found out by consistent short-pitched bowling by the English pacemen, and Srikkanth said that that was one area which needed work. "There were probably a few areas where we'll probably have to rework, correct ourselves and then come back in the game. Like playing short-pitched bowling, practising more on that. That will help."

He also admitted that India missed the services of Virender Sehwag, with the aggressive opener returning home from England due to an injury.

"Virender Sehwag is a devastating batsman. He can just hit any bowler to any part of the ground in any form of cricket. The whole world missed Virender Sehwag. (A good) start is very important in Twenty20 cricket, and Sehwag and Gambhir form a fantastic opening pair."

Though he said that Dhoni's lack of form "probably" contributed to the exit, he did not seem unduly worried and termed it just a "bad time" for the captain. "Every player goes through good times and bad times. So we can't really blame him for it. I'm sure he will come out of it, he's a master player and I'm sure he knows how to bounce back, and he will do a good job."

Srikkanth said the unpredictable nature of Twenty20 cricket was the reason for India's exit, and pointed to the recently concluded IPL where the underdogs - Royal Challengers Bangalore and Deccan Chargers, the bottom two teams in last year's competition - reached the final.