Cricket world cup 2019 is just around the corner. The ten participating Teams will be required to name their squads in another two to three weeks, time. This is going to be long tournament and ICC must have allowed teams to pick 16 players for the mega event, but this is another topic altogether and I will probably write a separate article on the topic, but in this article my focus is, whom should the Indian team pick for the world cup?
Right after the Champions Trophy final which India lost against the arch-rivals Pakistan, the team management made a decision and picked Kuldeep and Chahal for the series against Australia and New Zealand, it was a brave call as Ashwin and Jadeja were vital part of the team when the team won the Champions Trophy in 2013. Kuldeep and Chahal didn’t disappoint though and performed exceptionally well and since then both of them have established themselves as the first choice spinners in the team, both will play a huge role if India wants to win the World Cup for the 3rdtime. One thing which I liked about Virat or the team management that they didn’t drop any of these spinners after a bad game, that is, they were given a consistent run.
It’s not a hidden fact that India has been trying to find a no. 4 batsman for quite a while now, today as I write this piece I’m surprised to find Ambati Rayudu not in the playing 11. This shows the team is still not confident about him being their best bet at the position. Not only Rayudu, none of Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer have been given a consistent run at the no. 4 position. Well Karthik was dropped from the squad against Australia altogether. IF the management have backed any of the above mentioned 4 batsmen, as they did with the spinners, who knows India would have got their best combination, by now. But one name which has been talked about in the past week or so has been of Vijay Shankar. He has grabbed all the little chances he’s got with both his hands. His knocks of 40s came when India was in a struggling position and the last over he bowled against Australia the other day to get India over the line showed that he’s got a good head. He could possibly be the answer to India’s no.4 problems. If he plays at no. 4 the side would look more balanced as Hardik Pandya will come back straight into the side after he is fully fit. India, therefore will have two fast bowling all- rounder in seaming conditions.
If it were up to me to pick the final world cup squad, I would have picked following players;
Rohit, Dhawan, Virat, Dhoni, Jadhav, Shankar, H Pandya, Bhuvi, Kuldeep, Chahal. Bumrah Shami, Jadeja, Dinesh karthik and Umesh yadav.