ICC World Cup 2019: Poll - Who will be the 15th member of India’s squad
The Indian cricket team selectors will name the squad for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019 on Monday and while most of the spots are already decided, some still remain a mystery for the fans.
Eleven players select themselves due to their experience and performance — Virat Kohli (captain), MS Dhoni (wicket-keeper), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Kedar Jadhav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Apart from these players, the biggest bone of contention will be the spot for the second wicket-keeper in the team. With MS Dhoni being an automatic choice, the other spot will be contested between Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik with the younger Pant having a clear advantage due to his brilliant run of form in recent matches.
There are also some players who have a good chance to making the cut but it is difficult to predict whether they will find their names in the final list or not. One of the surprise members of this list is Ambati Rayudu. The Chennai Super Kings batsman has been a regular in the No. 4 spot for India but a recent lean patch has raised question marks on his inclusion. The No. 4 spot has been a heavily debated issue and the likes of KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant have found themselves in the running to claim one of the most significant positions of the batting line-up.
Vijay Shankar’s recent exploits in the India-Australia series however could tempt selectors to pick him as a back-up all-rounder as Pandya has only recently recovered from a back niggle. Former India skipper Sourav Ganguly favoured Shankar ahead of Ravindra Jadeja but another former cricketer Madan Lal thinks he is a work in progress. “You can’t call him an all-rounder just yet. He still has to work on his bowling,” he said.
When it comes to the bowling attack, the two wildcards will be Khaleel Ahmed and Deepak Chahar. Khaleel has played a number of limited overs matches for India recently and a left-arm pace option will be quite lucrative to the selectors. But, injury issues have bothered the youngster and he missed a number of matches for Sunrisers Hyderabad in this year’s Indian Premier League.
On the other hand, Chahar has been excellent for Chennai Super Kings and Dhoni’s plan of bowling him out in the first 10 overs has worked wonders for him. With 10 wickets, he is the fifth highest wicket-taker in the IPL this season and he can be a big surprise when India announce their squad for the ICC World Cup 2019.