With Mahendra Singh Dhoni rested, the Virat Kohli-led India side departed for Zimbabwe on Monday, brimming with confidence. For the man at the helm, his team is strong despite several key players being given a break.
(1st ODI, Preview: Zimbabwe seek an upset vs understrength India)
India will take on hosts Zimbabwe in a 5-ODI contest starting Wednesday and Kohli said the touring party is completely focused on maintaining its winning momentum. "I don't think experience matters, especially in a limited overs game. You need 11 players, who are hungry for success, who are hardworking and whose vision is team victory. All 15 players are strong and it is a strong unit, which is good," he was quoted as saying. (Also read: Can Zimbabwe stun India? Why not, asks coach)
India have had rousing success in the past two months with the Champions Trophy win followed by the tri-series title in West Indies, where Kohli captained the team in three matches. The 24-year-old said while he can't guarantee wins, he hopes to lead by setting examples. "I can't guarantee (wins/maintaining momentum). If we continue this way, it will be a good time for Indian cricket. A lot of things that would make people happy. I always like to lead from the front and set an example for whoever is playing with or around me. I like taking responsibilities. That is a natural thing for me," he said. (Suggested read: When India last toured Zimbabwe, they were left stunned...)
Note: The Indian team for the series in Zimbabwe do not have the following players: Dhoni, R Ashwin, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma.
(With PTI inputs)