Virat Kohli frustrated by reserve bowler; India hint at Kuldeep Yadav show in T20 World Cup Super 8 tie vs Afghanistan | Crickit
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Virat Kohli frustrated by reserve bowler; India hint at Kuldeep Yadav show in T20 World Cup Super 8 tie vs Afghanistan

Jun 19, 2024 09:05 AM IST

If the two practice sessions and Kuldeep Yadav's performance in them hint at anything, India are likely to draft an extra spinner for the Afghanistan match.

A team is unlikely to engage in tinkering with the playing XI after a winning streak, especially in a tournament like the World Cup. However, with the conditions being vastly different in the Caribbeans, where the spinners have found more aid, than in New York, which was pace-friendly, there have been discussions among experts on whether India should bring in an extra spinner in the line-up for the impending match against Afghanistan in the T20 World Cup Super Eight game in Barbados on June 20. And from what the two practice sessions in the Kensington Oval have hinted is that left-arm leg-spinner Kuldeep Yadav could make his first appearance in the ongoing ICC tournament.

India had their second practice session in Barbados ahead of the match against Afghanistan
India had their second practice session in Barbados ahead of the match against Afghanistan

According to a report in the PTI, much like the opening practice session in Barbados on Monday, Kuldeep had yet another extended bowling session on Tuesday, where he bowled to both Virat Kohli and captain Rohit Sharma, who focussed on playing the slog sweep. Later, under the watchful eye of head coach Rahul Dravid, the chinaman bowled to Rohit with an imaginary field set and Kuldeep beat the India opener a few times at the start of the session.

If the two practice sessions and Kuldeep's performance in them hint at anything, India are likely to draft an extra spinner for the match against Afghanistan, but the final call is likely to be taken on the day of the match. Not to forget, Australia had smashed 201 against England at this very venue earlier in the group stage of the tournament.

"The pitch should turn in the middle as well, may be not as much as it is doing in the nets but will definitely turn. The spinners have proved quite useful throughout the Caribbean thus far. I don't think India will make any changes, they would not want to compromise on their batting," said a former international who was present at the venue told PTI.

How could India fit Kuldeep Yadav in the playing XI?

Captain Rohit has been focused on keeping all his all-rounder options in the playing XI, leaving the team with three specialist pacers and two finger spinners in Axar Patel and Ravindra Jadeja, besides two fast-bowling all-rounders in Hardik Pandya and Shivam Dube, stretching the batting till No. 8.

With India unlikely to compromise on their main strategy in the World Cup, the only way for Kuldeep to find a way in the playing XI would be if the team drops a third pacer - Mohammed Siraj or Arshdeep Singh.

Virat Kohli was left frustrated by...

The former India captain, desperate to get back among the runs after a poor show in the group stage, where he managed just five runs in three innings, including a golden duck against the USA, also had an extended session at the net. The 35-year-old mostly faced throwdowns before moving on to the adjacent net where he took on Kuldeep and left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed. While Kohli middled most of the balls from the spinner, he struggled against the reserve bowler which left him frustrated at the nets.

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