At times constructive criticism does wonders for an individual or an unit. And presently it is high time for this Indian cricket team to do a self-introspection.

Both Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli want this team to be the No. 1 touring side in the world. This a relatively young squad with plenty of potentials, there is no doubt in that. Most times, there is hardly any opposition which can come close to them on home conditions. However, when it comes to performing under challenging circumstances away from home, this team hasn’t lived up to the expectations so far in this Kohli-Shastri regime of Indian cricket.

Well, as we continue to post-mortem India’s back to back series defeats in South Africa and England, the approach of the team management regarding the handling of players has been put under the scanner. According to a piece by one of the leading newspapers in the country, a ‘senior’ member of the team has recently revealed that the constant chopping and changing in the XI has created a concerning amount of insecurity in the dressing room. And quite naturally this uncertainty surrounding their futures with the team has affected the performances of certain players.

As a Test captain, Kohli has fielded 38 different XIs in his 39-match long tenure so far. One needs to admit here that being the No. 1 ranked team there should have been more consistency in the team selection, irrespective of the conditions. Though, injuries to the players had also played a major part on this aspect, but at times the team management had unnecessarily opted for the horses for courses strategy, which no one can deny.

Dropping Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the Centurion Test earlier this year or someone like Cheteshwar Pujara at Edgbaston in this series, are a few classic examples of this inexplicable selection policy. Even during the limited-overs leg of this England tour, on a few occasions the think-tank decided to keep Kuldeep Yadav out of the XI considering the dimensions of the grounds. Remember, the left-arm wrist-spinner has been perhaps India’s best bowler with the white ball, of late.

In the Test series, Kuldeep was in the squad for the first three matches and played the rain-affected Lord’s game, in which the pitch had absolutely nothing for him. When he failed to make an impact, the youngster was sent back home. Don’t think this decision has boosted his confidence level.

“It would have been better if they had said at the start of the tour, ‘guys, we will go with the same team for the first three Tests. Do your best.’ That gives a different kind of confidence. Kohli is a good man and wants the best for the team and doesn’t mean to create it but the changes make you doubt yourself. It’s our mistake to feel like that probably but we are humans,” the player, whose named hasn’t been revealed by the newspaper, has been quoted saying.

From this comment of that particular individual, we can assume that there is a serious communication gap between the players and the think-tank, which includes the captain and coach. Well, it is quite surprising because Kohli often prides himself on his communication skills.

In fact, even between them a difference in opinion was noticed when India lost that Test series in South Africa, earlier this year. The coach blamed the acclimatisation period for the defeat whereas skipper Kohli felt, the team was ‘well-prepared’, as he feels following the defeat here in England as well.

Yes, in recent years at the international level no team has performed consistently away from home. In fact, unlike most of the other national sides, the Indian have at least created opportunities and run teams close on alien conditions. But there is nothing called a moral victory in professional sport. Either you win or lose and in the record books, India have lost both the series in South Africa and England – a result which should certainly not be acceptable for this unit, which according to their coach is superior than the previous Indian teams.

Hence, it seems going forward the team management should review their strategies.