Former India cricketer Aakash Chopra has stated that it will be extremely difficult for India to pick the playing XI for the first T20I without being unfair to a few players. The Men in Blue will play their first T20I of the three-match series against New Zealand on Wednesday, November 17 in Jaipur.
After a disappointing T20 World Cup campaign, Team India are all set to lock horns with New Zealand in a three-match T20I series at home. This will be the starting point for Rohit Sharma as India’s full-time T20I captain, whereas Rahul Dravid begins his head-coach tenure. The 16-member India T20I squad includes five opening batsmen consisting of skipper Rohit Sharma, vice-captain KL Rahul, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Venkatesh Iyer, and wicket-keeper Ishan Kishan.
India's star-studded top-order is promising ahead of the T20I series, but the Rohit Sharma-led side lacks depth in the middle-order batting unit. Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, and Suryakumar Yadav are the only available options for middle-order positions as they have experience in batting down the order. It is likely that few players will have to bat outside of their usual position to construct India's batting line-up against New Zealand in the first T20I match.
Meanwhile, Aakash Chopra has predicted that few players in the squad might have to bat in positions that are not ideal for them.
Almost impossible to pick the India playing XI for tonight without being a little unfair on a few players—either can’t play them or play them in positions that aren’t ideal for them. Such has been the selection. #IndvNZ— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) November 17, 2021
The other issue is dew…which is going to be loads considering the venues and the weather. Can’t play three spinners. Will have to leave out one between Ashwin and Chahal. Axar plays as he’s the only all-rounder in the side who could bat at 7. #IndvNZ— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) November 17, 2021