Former India batting coach Sanjay Bangar, ahead of India's second match of the T20I World Cup 2021 against New Zealand on Sunday, has said that off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin might replace Varun Chakravarthy. Bangar reckoned that India will need the experience of Ashwin in the high-pressure match.
Ashwin, who last played in white-ball cricket for India in July 2017, played in both the warm-up games ahead of the Super 12s matches. He went wicketless against England after spending 23 runs in four overs, while bowling in the Powerplay overs versus Australia, the 35-year-old picked two wickets from his 8 overs.
However, mystery spinner Varun Chakravarthy got the nod ahead of Ashwin in India's high-voltage opener against Pakistan. India lost that match by 10 wickets as Chakravarthy along with other India bowlers, went wicketless after spending 33 runs from his quota of four overs.
Pakistan with three wins in as many matches are the table-toppers in Group 2 of Super 12s stage. Afghanistan are currently placed second in the table after winning one of their two matches, While Namibia sit on the third spot after beating Scotland. Considering the aforementioned scenario, India and New Zealand are expected to give it their all against each other in their bid for a semi-finals berth.
Ahead of the match, former India batsman Sanjay Bangar has said that Ashwin could be preferred ahead of Chakravarthy against the Kiwis.
He said, “Varun Chakravarthy’s recent performances in UAE. He was very effective at Sharjah, but not in Dubai - where this game will be played.
“Taking into account the importance of the game, the number of matches played by Varun Chakravarthy is a little less, and his international experience is a little less.
“For a game of this significance, you would definitely want somebody with temperament and experience. So, in my opinion, Ravichandran Ashwin may get the nod in place of Varun Chakravarthy,” said Bangar.
The high-octane clash between the two teams will start from 7:30 PM IST on Sunday, October 31.