In a recent episode of The ICC Review podcast, Indian cricket star Pandya, in conversation with esteemed commentator Harsha Bhogle and host Brian Murgatroyd, shared his thoughts on the pressure and expectations his team will face in the upcoming World Cup.
India’s Top Ranking and Home Advantage
Currently, India holds the top spot in the MRF Tyres Men’s ODI Team Rankings. With the World Cup taking place on home soil, the team can expect the support of over a billion fans. Pandya believes that this overwhelming home support could be a significant factor in propelling India towards their third World Cup victory.
Utilising Expectations as a Driving Force
Pandya expressed his excitement about the forthcoming tournament, acknowledging the high expectations. He said, “The love, support, and cheers we will receive will bring out the best in us.” He emphasized the importance of the team’s world-class batters and bowlers coming together, playing fearlessly, and using the pressure and expectations to their advantage.
Turning Rankings into World Cup Success
India has maintained its No.1 ranking for a considerable period in recent years, a clear indication of their consistent performance. Pandya expressed confidence in the team’s ability to translate this success into World Cup glory this year.
Pandya’s Journey and Aspirations
Pandya, who was part of the Indian team that was eliminated in the semi-finals of the 2019 World Cup by New Zealand, feels that his experiences have prepared him better for leading his team to victory. Reflecting on his journey, he said, “I always wanted to achieve great things, but I never imagined I would reach this point.”
He attributed his success to his parents’ good deeds and support, stating, “It was a dream to play for the country, and I am living the dream.”