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T20 World Cup 2021 | Indian Team is one pacer short for the T20 WC, feels MSK Prasad

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MSK Prasad feels India could have included an extra pacer in the team of T20 WC.


T20 World Cup 2021 | Indian Team is one pacer short for the T20 WC, feels MSK Prasad

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SportsCafe Desk


Former Chairman of selectors MSK Prasad feels that the Indian squad for the T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and Oman is short of one pacer. Prasad added that as the team is playing the majority of its matches in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, an extra fast bowler could have been handy.

The Indian squad for the showpiece event is a spin-heavy team consisting of five spinners - Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel and Varun Chakravarthy. The team has four pacers including Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar with Shardul Thakur and Deepak Chahar in the reserves. Prasad has also raised his concerns about Hardik Pandya not bowling in the ongoing IPL 2021.  

“It is a decent squad but I feel that they are one fast bowler short actually …because we are playing majority of the matches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, so may be one more fast bowler could have been handy,” Prasad told PTI in an interview.

“Had we played more matches in Sharjah, this was okay, but one fast bowler could have (been there) and more important with Hardik not bowling, I think it is a little cause of concern,” explained the 46-year-old.

India will begin their T20 World Cup campaign against Pakistan on October 24 in Dubai. 

When asked about Hardik Pandya not being asked to bowl in the IPL to preserve him for the T20 WC, Prasad said that he was included as an all-rounder and not as a batter. 

“See, Hardik has been picked as an all-rounder, not as a batsman, he is seen an all-rounder, who will add that what you call balance to the side.

“…(it is) a little surprising that, or I don’t know whether he is being instructed, not to bowl or he is being preserved to bowl only in the World Cup,” he wondered.

“We don’t exactly know, but in an ideal scenario, Hardik has been picked as an all-rounder, I would love to see him bowling.

“I don’t know what exactly is the thought process because selectors must be knowing it, or the Board must be knowing it, but Hardik, if he doesn’t bowl then there will be little, I mean, the balance of the side will get a little affected,” said Prasad.

The former India wicket-keeper backed Virat Kohli’s decision to step down as the T20I skipper after the World Cup.

"He has taken strain of captaincy across all formats, which is clearly visible right now on his individual performances. So, I think (it) must be a right decision to take,” said Prasad when asked how this decision of Virat would help the batsman in him.

 “We want Virat, a man who can get 70 centuries in a decade’s span, we would want to see the same Virat. If the T20 captaincy is affecting the batting, then it is the right decision to take,” added the veteran of 96 first-class matches.

When asked about Yuzvendra Chahal exclusion, he said that Chahal was dropped because of his indifferent form. 

“Instead of talking why he (Chahal) has not been included, instead of expressing our opinion, I would definitely say that why he’s been excluded,” he said.

“Probably the selectors would have gone with his form in the mind, unfortunately he was not among the wickets in the last few months.

“They would have seen that form and now that he has regained that, it’s a tricky situation right now, but Chahal has been our premier T20 bowler, he is the highest wicket-taker for India in the T20 format,” added Prasad.

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