The Indian squads for the T20I and ODI series against Australia have been announced. The selection panel led by MSK Prasad made some important calls. While everyone expected a stable team, the committee have sprung in some surprises.
KL Rahul has been included in the squad while Dinesh Karthik has been left out. This has bamboozled almost all of the cricketing fraternity. This is mainly because Karthik hasn’t done anything wrong to deserve this.
However selectors seem confused with the choice of second wicketkeeper for the upcoming World Cup. They want to test Rishabh Pant for a few more ODIs before taking the final call.
However with all the big names, Pant’s batting position remains a big question. A few ago Australian veteran spinner Shane Warne wanted Rishabh to open the innings. This option was also backed by former Indian skipper Sunil Gavaskar.
But with openers Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan performing well, this option looks unlikely. However during a press conference chief selector MSK Prasad nodded positively when asked if Pant will be used as an opener.
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Discussions are still going on
Prasad stressed on the advantages of having a left-handed batsman like Rishabh in the squad. He said that the left-right combination can be very useful during the World Cup matches.
Prasad said, “We have included him considering many factors. We will try and figure out his best possible batting position because being a left-hander. There is an advantage of playing left-right combination. We are discussing all that.”
Moreover when asked if Pant could play as a top order batsman in the series against Australia, Prasad said, “Yes”. The series against Australia will be India’s final international assignment before World Cup.
As Pant is included at the expense of Karthik, it would be a great chance for him to cement his position. Karthik hasn’t done anything wrong to receive the axe. But the selectors favour Pant as he is a left-hander and offers an attacking option in the line-up.