Bowling coach also thinks a small break after the 2021 IPL might have helped refresh a team that has been on the road for six months
“[…] I’m not trying to give any excuses,” Arun said. “But I think the toss plays a very very vital role, which I think shouldn’t – the toss shouldn’t be of any consequence. But here, the toss gives very undue advantage and there’s a huge change between batting in the first innings and batting in the second innings. That shouldn’t be the case in a very short format like this.”
Arun has been at the centre of India’s new approach to managing bowlers’ workloads over the last few years, a change that has helped the team be a bigger threat especially on overseas tours. There has been little chance for any rigorous rotation this year, however, after the IPL was split in two thanks to a Covid-19 outbreak when the tournament came back to India earlier this year. The second phase of the league ended just nine days before India’s first match at the World Cup, and essentially ensured the players have been in a bubble for the best part of six months.
“Being on the road for six months is a huge ask,” Arun said. “The players haven’t gone home since they had a short break after the last  IPL, and they have been in a bubble for six months. And I think that takes a huge toll. So specific to your question – maybe a short break between the IPL and the World Cup would have done a lot of good for these boys.”
Varun Shetty is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo