After India’s ten-wicket defeat against England in the second semifinal of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022, former Pakistan seamer Wasim Akram took a subtle dig at the Indian Premier League (IPL). The 56-year-old said that he was intrigued by India’s failure to win the T20 World Cup since the inception of IPL, the biggest and the richest franchise league, in 2009.
“Everyone thought the IPL will be the big difference between India and other teams. IPL started in 2008. India won a T20 World Cup before that in 2007. Since the advent of the IPL, India have never won a T20 World Cup. They won a World Cup in 2011 but that’s 50 overs,” Akram said during a panel discussion on ASports.
India were knocked out in the Group stage of the last year’s T20 World Cup and couldn’t make it to the final four of the 2022 Asia Cup in September.
Wasim felt India would have performed better against England if their bowlers had more pace to trouble the batters.
“It’s not that India don’t have fast bowlers who can bowl quick. They have a few very exciting young pace bowlers like Avesh Khan and Umran Malik. These guys can consistently bowl at 145 kmph. But the problem is most of their young fast bowlers lose their pace after playing one season in the IPL,” added Wasim.
“After one IPL season, Avesh’s pace came down to 135. So the BCCI should check why this is happening frequently in Indian cricket.”
According to Wasim, the youngsters in India also lose the hunger to work hard on their game after earning big contracts in the IPL.
“I think Avesh was paid 12 crores (Rs120 million) in the IPL. I am all for money. But when you are young and you are paid so much money, it’s possible for a youngster to lose focus and lose the hunger to work hard,” Wasim added further.
“So I think there should be a cap when it comes to giving IPL contracts to young players. Only then will these youngsters realise the importance of working hard and showing the hunger to improve.”
The finals of the ongoing T20 World Cup will see Jos Buttler-led side locking horns with Babar Azam’s Pakistan at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Sunday (November 13).