India vs England T20: 4 big headaches India face for selecting playing XI- Ahead of the 1st T20I match against England at the Motera Stadium, team India will have 4 big headaches in selecting the playing XI as it would serve as the stepping stone for team selection for the T20I World Cup in October.
In England, India will get the strongest T20I opponent against whom India can iron out its combinations. With Rohit Sharma returning to the side and a few new faces to be inducted, India will have a lot of options to choose from. InsideSport has listed four big problems that team India must solve.
IND vs ENG 1st T20 – India vs England T20 Series: All you need to know IND…
India’s opening dilemma: With Rohit Sharma back to the side after recovering from injury before the Test series against England, India’s limited-overs vice-captain will be the first person on the team sheet. But then comes the big problem — whether to go with Shikhar Dhawan as the conventional opening combination or keep KL Rahul with Rohit. For Dhawan, he does have a fantastic opening partnership record with Rohit. But of late, he has not been in top form. In the T20I series against Australia, he scored 81 runs at an average of 27, failing to emulate his rich IPL 2020 exploits.
For Rahul, he too could not replicate his rich form in the IPL 2020. In three T20I matches against Australia, the Karnataka batsman scored 51, 30 and 0. That is one point that Virat Kohli will have to ponder on.
India vs England T20: 4 big headaches India face for selecting playing XI
No 4 position strikes again: In the last few years, no one has been able to cement the No 4 spot in India’s limited-overs squad. From MS Dhoni, Ambati Rayudu to Manish Pandey and Shreyas Iyer, all have been tried with mixed success. In Australia, India tried Sanju Samson at No 4 with not much success. Samson was promptly dropped from the India squad and now, the fight for the position is between Iyer and new man Suryakumar Yadav. The latter plays at No 3 position for both Mumbai Indians in the IPL and Mumbai in domestic cricket.
However, with the T20I World Cup in mind, India could go with Iyer, who has been in fine form in domestic cricket. If he fails, Yadav could be given a chance in the last two T20Is.
Wicketkeeper dilemma: The Test series against Australia and England were revelations for Rishabh Pant, who proved that he could replace MS Dhoni as a wicketkeeper-batsman. When Pant was in poor form, KL Rahul was tried as a wicketkeeper-batsman and he did impress. But he is not a regular keeper and playing him in a part-time role could be an issue in the World Cup. But with Pant’s return to form, he could be an automatic selection in the T20I team.
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Bowling combinations: In Hardik Pandya, India will have the third pacer in the playing XI. But what India will need to ponder about is the two frontline pacers. Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s return from injury could mean that he would get his place back in the team. As for the second pacer role, T Natarajan is doubtful with a shoulder injury and Mohammed Shami too is nursing an injury. That means, India could opt to go with either Deepak Chahar or Navdeep Saini or Shardul Thakur, who could provide batting depth. As for spinners, Yuzvendra Chahal and Axar Patel are likely to retain their places while Washington Sundar will too come in handy.