Former Indian cricketer and presently an analyst, Aakash Chopra, on Monday, compared Virat Kohli's 2019 World Cup team with that of the victorious 2011 side under the leadership of MS Dhoni. Aakash opined that Kohli's men failed to grab the elusive trophy as they did not have a team that could go on to make the difference.
Kohli's Men in Blue were the favourites to win the trophy. Yet there were flaws aplenty - one of which includes the middle-order issue. An uncertain No.4, Shikhar Dhawan's untimely injury and poor replacement calls - all led to the Indian team's downfall. India eventually lost to New Zealand in the semifinal in Manchester by 18 runs to continue with the nation's trophy-less run since 2013.
Aakash on Monday did not compare the two teams, he compared players for each position to reach his conclusion.
“If you have to choose between Tendulkar and Rohit, whom will you choose, very tough call. They may just cancel each other out because Rohit has struck 5 centuries in a World Cup edition, which no one has done. Between Rahul/Dhawan and Sehwag, my heart says to keep Sehwag ahead, but let me keep Dhawan ahead just for argument sake," said Chopra on his YouTube channel.
“Between Gambhir and Kohli, no doubt this Kohli of 2019 is definitely ahead of Gambhir of 2011. Although Kohli was there in the 2011 team as well, but there is a lot of difference between that Kohli and this Kohli. Yuvraj Singh is winning this race hands down against Dinesh Karthik/Kedar Jadhav/Pant/Pandya as a batsman, as a bowler, as a full package match-winner.
“Virat Kohli of 2011, we can keep Pant/DK/Kedhar/MSD ahead of him. Raina is again a match-winner. Whom will you compare with, probably Hardik Pandya. Raina is ahead that time even if you compare him with Kedar,” he added.
”MS Dhoni of 2011 vs MS Dhoni of 2019, no doubt MSD of 2011. Harbhajan Singh is a match-winner, so is Jadeja, maybe 50-50. Jaddu will get more numbers for fielding, Harbhajan Singh for bowling, Jaddu slightly ahead in batting in international ODI stage. Let us cancel out Zaheer and Bumrah, they are at par as bowlers almost, both are match-winners. Shami slightly ahead of Munaf. You will have to keep Nehra ahead of Kuldeep or Chahal,” Chopra said.
He eventually concluded by saying that Dhoni's men were more stronger and had a match-winning side. He further added that the management had failed to create a side that could win the World Cup in 2019.
“So if you see the full comparison, MS Dhoni’s team of 2011 has won. That is why, if there is a match Dhoni’s team is stronger and a match-winning team,” said Chopra.
“Should we get a slight perspective, if you have not won the World Cup in 2019, probably you didn’t have a World Cup-winning team only. Because the middle-order was so brittle, you didn’t have the team to win. You should have played Shami and you didn’t play him. You didn’t prepare the team and Shikhar Dhawan got injured as well. So if you consider everything, 2011 team was lot ahead of this team that played in 2019. Therefore the trophy is with the 2011 team and not the 2019 team,” he explained.