ICC World Twenty20: Team guide - India
India will be one of the favourites in Bangladesh, where the conditions should suit them, but they arrive out of form.
Last Updated: 17/03/14 12:03pm
As at the end of the Asia Cup, India had not beaten an international team other than Afghanistan and Bangladesh in any format since November last year. That is 14 matches against New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka where they have failed to win once.
So for India to add the Twenty20 title to their 50-over crown, they need to pull something special out of the bag - in particular a fast bowler who does not get carted all over Bangladesh in the coming weeks.
The batting should look after itself. Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh and skipper MS Dhoni are collectively hugely experienced. No-one has played more T20 cricket than the Indians after all.
Amit Mishra, Ravi Ashwin and Ravi Jadeja - the main spin options - are vital because the fast bowling is a real problem.
Mohit Sharma, Vinay Kumar, Mohammed Shami and Varun Aaron are simply far too expensive. The Indians have high hopes for Aaron, the fastest bowler the country has produced for some time - he can bowl at 94mph. But Bangladesh's not exactly fabled batting line-up took him apart in an ODI last month.
The batsmen have had to chase down ODI totals of 300 or more eight times in one-day internationals since the start of 2013 and that tells its own story. They cannot keep doing it.
Stuart Binny, son of former all-rounder Roger, may be an alternative. A consistent performer in the IPL, his medium-pace can be notoriously hard to get away and he's a destructive batsman.
But Jadeja is probably the most important man in the team, the middle-order finisher and third spinner. He is often the bowler opposition batsmen attack because he is still, for some reason, seen as the weakest of the tweakers. That's despite getting Michael Clarke out five times in six Test innings last year. So he picks up bucketloads of wickets with batsman trying to slog him out of the park.
Nicknamed 'Rockstar' by Shane Warne, he can win games on his own with bat and ball and he has a rocket arm too. He could be player of the tournament, if India somehow negotiate a path to the final.
India are likely to go with all three spinners in their attack, and whichever pacemen they do pick need to keep their economy rate down. If they do, India can win it, but, given their woeful recent form, don't bet on it.
Squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Ajinkya Rahane, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Stuart Binny, Amit Mishra, Mohit Sharma, Varun Aaron.