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Saturday, January 15, 2011

World Cup 2011 - Indian squad selection on Jan 17th

The final Indian team  for the 2011 World Cup will be picked by the selection committee on January 17. 15 players will be picked which means an equal 15 will have to be dropped from this list.

The 30 probables selected were as follows:

  • Openers - Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Gautam Gambhir, M Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane. Dhawan and Rahane have played no part in the on-going series while Vijay is playing just because Sehwag and Gambhir are injured. The three will probably be the first set to be removed from the list. Sehwag will not be able to bowl his off-breaks because of the shoulder injury while Sachin has started bowling again (though only in test matches).
  • Middle-order - Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Ravindra Jadeja, Saurabh Tiwary, Cheteshwar Pujara. Jadeja was given enough chances in the recent past but the youngster has not been able to make a mark for himself. Saurabh Tiwary promised but did not get enough chances to prove his mettle. Pujara is more a test batsmen who would be expected to play a Dravid-like role latter in his career. Other than Virat, everyone can bowl 5-6 overs in an ODI and fill in the fifth bowlers slot. 3 of the 5 players will play eventually in any match and that will be dependent on the opposition and pitch where the match will be played.
  • Wicket-keepers - MS Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik, Parthiv Patel, Wriddhiman Saha. None of the reserve wicket-keepers have done anything of note to be selected. Since the matches will be held in the sub-continent, getting a replacement will be easy as well. Parthiv Patel will be on call if anything untoward happens to MSD.
  • Pace bowlers - Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra, Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel, Sreesanth, Ishant Sharma, Vinay Kumar. This is one of the trickiest choices that the selectors have to make. MS Dhoni and Gary Kirsten will probably give the last opinion on the one that will be selected. Ishant and Vinay Kumar have moved out of the reckoning but whom will the selectors drop from the other five bowlers? Zaheer, Ashish and Praveen Kumar are the ones who will be definitely present. Whether the selectors choose the accuracy of Munaf or the wicket-taking ability of Sreesanth is to be seen? The on-going series will give a clue to the selection - so far, it has been Munaf in the forefront.
  • Spinners - Harbhajan Singh, R Ashwin, Pragyan Ojha, Amit Mishra, Piyush Chawla. Though one might wonder what wrong did Pragyan Ojha do, it is more likely the great job that Ashwin has been doing in T20s and ODIs which will clinch the second spinner slot for him. With quite a few part-time spinners in the squad, dont think there will be more than two spinners selected in the team.
All these selections will change if the players who have been injured (Sehwag, Gambhir, Praveen Kumar) continue to be unavailable during the World Cup also. I am confused with the last slot that remains to be selected - as mentioned above, Munaf is most likely going to get the nod to play his second World Cup.

Do you agree with this team? What do you expect from the selectors?

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