NEW DELHI: Team India head coach Rahul Dravid perceives a noticeable decline in the advantage of playing on home turf for subcontinental teams. This shift is attributed to the fact that foreign players, due to their exposure in the Indian Premier League (IPL), have developed a heightened ability to adeptly navigate the intricacies of Indian playing conditions.
With the ODI World Cup slated to be held in India in October-November, Dravid feels that the home advantage is a thing of the past.
“The whole thing of home advantage on the sub-continent has reduced to a large extent over the past 10-12 years. People come and play here so much, especially tournaments like the IPL. They are here for two-three months getting used to conditions. It will be a tight tournament,” former Indian skipper said.

India will play reigning champion England in the first warm-up game on September 30 at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati, before travelling to Thiruvananthapuram to play the Netherlands on October 3.
India’s opening match against Australia is scheduled for October 8 in Chennai, and their highly anticipated clash against traditional rivals Pakistan is slated for October 15 in Ahmedabad.

Earlier on Tuesday, star Indian batter Virat Kohli said he is looking forward to the marquee tournament, acknowledging the pressure of expectations from the home fans.
“Any challenge in front of you, you look forward to it. When difficulty comes in front of you get excited. You don’t shy away from it. After 15 years I still like encounters, and the World Cup 2023 is one (challenge). It excites me, I need something new to, you know, propel me to another level,” said Kohli at a promotional event.


Kohli did not deny that there is pressure of expectations on him and the team. But Kohli reminded everyone that no one wants to win the World Cup more than the players themselves.


“The pressure is always there. The fans always say we want (the team) to win a cup very badly. I’d like to say not more than me. So, I’m in the right place. Honestly, I know the expectations are there and the emotions of the people are there. But please know that no one wants to win more than players,” he said.
(With PTI inputs)

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