India’s limited-overs captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has revealed why he thinks India will have a good chance in the 2017 Champions Trophy as he believes consistency is the key to retaining the ICC Champions Trophy they had won in 2013.
India will face Pakistan in their first match at Edgbaston, Birmingham, on 4 June next year.
Hosts England will be up against fast-improving Bangladesh in the June 1 opener at The Oval.
The eighth edition of the tournament will see 15 matches across three venues in England and Wales with The Oval hosting the final on 18th June.
Dhoni, who led India to the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013 a couple of years after helping his team to win the 50-over World Cup, also claimed he was aware of the challenges the event poses.
“Having won the event in 2013, we know how intense this event can be and we are under no illusion that it will be any different next year,” he said.
India has will have Asian rivals Pakistan and Sri Lanka in their group, as well as 1998 winner South Africa.
In Group A, world Champions Australia were grouped with New Zealand, England, and Bangladesh. This means that Australia’s rivalry with New Zealand is set to continue at the ICC Champions Trophy when they face each other at Edgbaston on June 2.
“In the ICC Champions Trophy, it doesn’t matter which other sides are in your group or who your semi-final or final opponent is. You have limited time and the key to success is consistency, and being on top of your game each time you step out onto the field. There is very little room for error.
“I am sure the ICC Champions Trophy, like any other ICC event, will be well organised and the team and I are looking forward to a lot of crowd support, which was one of the factors that helped us across the line in 2013,” Dhoni further said.
The eight top-ranked teams as on 30 September 2015, led by world champion Australia and defending champion India, will fight each other in the 18-day tournament from 1 to 18 June next year during which 15 matches will be played in Birmingham, Cardiff, and London (The Oval). This competition happens to be the second in importance only to the World Cup and features the top eight countries in the cricketing world.
However, the 2013 edition was earlier thought to be the last one but ICC later decided it should continue.