Yuzvendra Chahal, Prithvi Shaw and Mohammed Shami were not included by former Indian cricketer Saba Karim in his preferred 15-member India squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup.
The T20 World Cup is scheduled to be played in Oman and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), starting Oct. 17. The final will be played at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Nov. 14.
Ahead of the multi-nation tournament, the selectors have a tough task choosing the squad, considering plethora of options available.
During a discussion on India News, Saba Karim insisted that the full strengthen squad that was picked for the Twenty20 International (T20I) series against England, earlier this year, must be kept in mind while choosing the team for the T20 World Cup.
“The team that was chosen by the selectors for the series against England, there were around 17 players there, I have started choosing my team from there. The players who performed well there and have not got an opportunity on the Sri Lanka tour because they were in England, you don’t have any excuse to keep them out,” said Saba Karim, who played one Test and 34 ODIs for India.
The former ‘keeper-batsman included bowling all-rounder Washington Sundar as one of the spinners for the T20 World Cup.
“There should be consistency in selection. Because of that, I have kept Washington Sundar in my team. I feel that with the matches happening in the UAE, you will need an off-spinner there and he is kind of an all-rounder,” explained Saba Karim.
Sundar recently suffered a finger injury in the UK during India’s practice match against County Select XI in Durham. He is expected to miss the second phase of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, which is due to begin on Sept. 19 in the UAE. The selectors, however, will want to ensure Sundar’s full fitness before including him in the Indian squad for the T20 World Cup.
Saba Karim went on to name Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Rahul Chahar, who were recently seen during India’s series in Sri Lanka, in the bowling department in his chosen 15-member squad.
“Along with him, I have kept Rahul Chahar because I feel he is an attacking bowler, a wicket-taking bowler, a match-winner. And I am still keeping Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the team because I feel his form is coming back and he will be very essential for the Indian team,” added Saba Karim.
Shreyas Iyer, who underwent shoulder surgery in April and is aiming to recover fully ahead of the T20 World Cup, clinched the middle-order place in Saba Karim’s preferred squad.
“I have kept Shreyas Iyer because he was also in the team which had played against England and his performance was quite good there. He couldn’t play the IPL this year but his performance in the IPL was quite good last year. So, there has to be a basis to keep him out of the team,” the former batsman, who played for Bihar and Bengal in the domestic circuit, added further.
Saba Karim’s chosen 15-member Indian squad for the T20 World Cup: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, T Natarajan, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Deepak Chahar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar.