Indian off-spinner believes it is imperative India wins the tournament
Ravichandran Ashwin, the Indian off-spinner, has stressed the importance of winning the ICC World Twenty20 after a difficult year for the national side.
Since winning the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 there have been more downs than ups for a team that has slid down the Reliance ICC Test Rankings as a result of 4-0 series defeats in England and Australia.
In addition, India has not fared well in the ICC World T20 since winning the inaugural tournament in South Africa. As a result, there is much to do for the Indian squad in Sri Lanka.
Ashwin explained: "We won the 2007 [ICC World T20] and then this format has eluded us. We didn't do well in the last two [tournaments]. Now to put in faith and win this [ICC World T20] is critical for the team, in the sense that we [will have] have done a good job. Over the last year we had a tough time in Australia and England. To resurrect that and actually to do a good job here is important to everybody."
The slow bowler goes into the WT20 on a high after taking 18 wickets in the recent two-match Test series at home to New Zealand. Despite his recent success the Chennai-born cricketer says he and the rest of the attack will need a period of adjustment before getting to their best in the short format.
"We started [preparing] for the World Cup three-four days back. We have been playing Test cricket and now we have to switch over to this tournament. The good thing is that we have got a week's time in Sri Lanka to prepare for the [ICC World T20].
"It is a mind switchover and physical switchover for the bowlers in terms of lengths, lines and the amount of variations they have to bring into the game. This particular preparation would be ideal for us,"
Ashwin concluded.India gets their warm-up programme underway on Saturday against the host nation in Colombo.