2019 World Cup
Indian Cricket Team
By Sidharth Gulati and Prasenjit Dey
India's World Cup squad will be named in Mumbai on April 15 (Monday). Cricnwin caught up with four former India players who chose their respective squads.
To start off with, I think India have a great combination. They have the potential to lift the title. The core team is more or less settled, so there won’t be too many changes up the order. The No. 4 spot is still a problem and if I’m the selector, I would choose KL Rahul for that position. His performance in IPL is a good sign and honestly speaking, he’s too good a player to be dropped.
Ambati Rayudu is also one of the contenders (for the No. 4 spot) but he hasn’t got those big runs so far this year. Ajinkya Rahane could have been a good option but he too hasn’t shown consistency in the limited-overs formats.
While Rishabh Pant is still new to the international arena, I would definitely have him in my 15. He’s got the heart of a lion and can come up with an extraordinary performance in any game. Say if Pant plays six matches, he can single-handedly win three of them.
AYUB’S 15-MEMBER SQUAD
Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav
RESERVES: Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Rishabh Pant
Dinesh Karthik, on the other hand, is at a stage in his career where he should be featuring in the eleven. If that’s not the case then there’s no reason of having him in the squad.
Now who should be the fourth pacer - I would personally go with Ishant Sharma. He is someone who has been effective in the English conditions. Sharma has done well with the new ball in IPL and is still a better pick than Umesh Yadav, who has been given several opportunities but has failed to grab them.
AYUB’S FOUR SEMI-FINALISTS: England, India, Australia and West Indies
India appear to be a balanced side ahead of the World Cup. The core team is settled. At No. 4, I will go with Ambati Rayudu. Yes, he hasn’t done well so far (in the IPL) but I will not take the IPL form into consideration. The selectors have invested in him and it would be surprising if he’s dropped at the last moment.
As for Rishabh Pant, I feel he’s still not ready for the World Cup and should be given a bit more time to turn into a finished product. Dinesh Karthik will be my backup wicket-keeper. If Ambati Rayudu fails to do well in the first few games, Karthik can even feature as a proper batsman at No. 4.
CHETAN’S 15-MEMBER SQUAD
Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah
RESERVES: Mohammed Shami, Ravindra Jadeja, KL Rahul, Dinesh Karthik
The conditions in England are expected to be hot and dry and this is where I think Ravindra Jadeja will be handy. In overcast conditions, India can leave out both Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal and play three fast bowlers, Hardik Pandya and Jadeja as the lone spinner who can even bat.
If India need an extra bowler, the selectors can perhaps pick Vijay Shankar. But I don’t know why he isn’t bowling enough.
CHETAN’S FOUR SEMI-FINALISTS: India, Australia, England and West Indies
MANINDER’S 15-MEMBER SQUAD
Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Rishabh Pant, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami
RESERVES: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, KL Rahul, Ravindra Jadeja, Vijay Shankar.
This will be the likely 15. But honestly, I’m not that happy with the squad. They (the selectors) have groomed players who they thought would do wonders for them, but that hasn’t been the case. If you ask me, I would have had Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw and Shreyas Iyer in the ranks.
While the top three looks fine, who better than MS Dhoni at No. 4. His ability to anchor the innings will be crucial to the team’s cause. India have actually wasted his experience in the last one-and-a-half years by not playing him at that position.
MANINDER’S FOUR SEMI-FINALISTS: England, India, New Zealand and Australia
As far as the bowling department is concerned, the selectors didn’t groom Navdeep Saini and Siddarth Kaul in a bid to have a left-arm fast bowler (Khaleel Ahmed). And that’s why there are still question marks as to who will be the fourth pacer.
Vijay Shankar can still make it but I don’t know why he isn’t given the chances to showcase his bowling skills.
The core team is more or less settled.
In the middle order, I would prefer Ambati Rayudu at No. 4 and MS Dhoni at five. There is Kohli batting at No. 3. It's always a better approach to spread your best resources across different positions so that none of the areas of the team are weak. Dhoni has once again regained his touch in the past couple of months and that makes him a very good lower middle-order option.
RAMESH’S 15-MEMBER SQUAD
Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav/Vijay Shankar, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah
RESERVES: KL Rahul, Dinesh Karthik, Mohammad Shami, Ravindra Jadeja
The backup wicketkeeper’s slot is tricky. Rishabh Pant is a very talented batsman and Dinesh Karthik is an excellent overall package as a wicketkeeper-batsman. Pant has the ability to play a couple of match-defining innings. However, what you look for in these tournaments is experience and Karthik gets the edge. He has been in and around the international setup during major ICC tournaments. In my opinion, Karthik is the best choice to go with.
RAMESH’S FOUR SEMI-FINALISTS: India, Australia, England, South Africa/New Zealand
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