The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced a 15-member squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup on Monday (12 September). There were not too many surprises as the BCCI selection committee persisted with the players that have been playing in the last few months. However, there were a few notable omissions that did not go down well with Indian cricket team fans and experts.
Many criticized the board's decision to keep a bowler of Mohammed Shami's calibre on the standby players list and pick Harshal Patel ahead of him. Former cricketers like K Srikanth called out the BCCI for this decision. He said that Shami would have found a place in his team ahead of Harshal Patel. Sanju Samson's omission was also a talking point after the squad was announced.
While many are not too happy with a few selections, former India captain and legendary batter Sunil Gavaskar has said that the 15-member squad looks good. Gavaskar reckons that the return of Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel has strengthened India's bowling lineup and will allow the team to defend totals which has been a problem in the recent past. The former Indian opener-turned-commentator has also advised one and all to back the Rohit-led side for the showpiece event Down Under.
"This looks a very good team. With Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel coming in, it looks like India will be able to defend their totals. India have had problems in trying to defend totals. These two stalwarts coming in will certainly give the edge to India when defending totals,” Gavaskar said on India Today.
"Deepak Chahar is one name that stands out, but they have also retained Arshdeep Singh, who gives a left-arm option in the attack. Like I said, it's a good selection. We can always crib about this thing and that thing. But now the selection is done, this is India's team. So let's not ask why not this, why not that? We should back this team 100 per cent. Now that the selection is done, it's our team, back them 100 per cent."