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India have still not identified their core team: Bishan Singh Bedi

With little over a week to go for the cricket World Cup, spin legend Bishan Singh Bedi feels India are addressing their injury concerns too late in the day and the defending champions have still not identified their core team.

Injured players Rohit Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ravindra Jadeja and Ishant Sharma will be tested on February 7, a day before the Men in Blue play their first warm-up game against Australia and Bedi believes that the team management has left things too late.

“Having been in Australia for two-and-a-half-months they have not really touched base with the nucleus of the team. Five or six players should form the crux of the team, who remain a certainty in every match. One or two changes can happen on the pretext of changing a combination or resting a player but by and large six or seven players should be constant throughout and that hasn’t happened so far,” Bedi told PTI in an interview.

“I feel pretty strongly that why is this team being tested so late. You are testing the fitness of players a day before the warm-ups begin and you are leaving things too late. This should have happened very early,” he said.

The former Indian captain asserted that his “logical complain” pertains to the late fitness test of some of the players.

“Even if changes have to happen on medical grounds then it is too late. There is hardly any time left for players to be sent back and replacements to be flown in,” he argued.

Admitting that it will be difficult to bounce back from a below-par performance in the Tests and the recently-concluded tri-series in Australia, Bedi suggests that the only way out for the team is to raise their self-esteem, which according to him is at an all-time low.

“They have to individually raise their self-esteem. How they do it it’s entirely up to them. Self-esteem is a very individual effort. Self-esteem is how good you feel about yourself in your own eyes. Not in the eyes of the public, or the media or the coach or captain,” Bedi opined.

“That will only happen if you have done something good and that hasn’t happened so far. Self-esteem is very low and I am concerned about that. To raise ones self-esteem is to cross a big psychological barrier,” he added.

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