Yuzvendra Chahal
Irfan Pathan suggested India should prioritize selecting two wrist-spinners alongside five specialist bowlers for the T20 World Cup squad, highlighting the importance of wicket-taking options.

Former cricketer Irfan Pathan emphasized the necessity for India to include five specialist bowlers and two wrist-spinners in their T20 World Cup squad for the Caribbean and USA tournaments. With the squad announcement deadline of May 1 looming, discussions have intensified regarding India’s bowling options.

Pathan stressed the importance of having effective wicket-taking options, suggesting that having Ravindra Jadeja as a spin all-rounder at No. 8 warrants the inclusion of two wrist spinners. He specifically mentioned Ravi Bishnoi and Kuldeep Yadav as his preferred choices due to their impressive performances in the past.

“You need five good bowlers — that’s a must. What are your wicket-taking options? When you’re talking about Ravindra Jadeja at No. 8 and playing as a spin. I would rather have two proper wrist-spinners playing, (Ravi) Bishnoi and Kuldeep (Yadav), in my playing XI. If you look at Bishnoi’s numbers, you know, when he played, he was pretty good,” Pathan said when speaking on Star Sports.

Notably, Pathan opposed including Yuzvendra Chahal for the World Cup, citing concerns about his fielding abilities. He also named Jasprit Bumrah as the only certain pick among bowlers.

“Yes, we’re talking about Chahal right now because of the IPL performances but don’t forget the fielding part of it as well. If you have to balance the fielding, you have to balance where a bowler can bowl at a particular area. There’s only one player who you can blindly say is Bumrah. But apart from Bumrah, you need at least two fast bowlers who can be part of the regular XI,” the former cricketer said.

READ ALSO | T20 World Cup Strategy: Irfan Pathan Advocates for Virat Kohli’s Opening Role

“The biggest problem the Indian team has is the combination of fast bowling. It’s very important to fix that combination, so go towards experience. With Bumrah, you can see (Mohammed) Siraj and Arshdeep (Singh) there, which I don’t think is ideal, but this is the only option you have now,” Pathan added.

Former India batter K Srikkanth also expressed reservations about Mohammed Siraj’s selection for the World Cup, citing inconsistency and preferring Avesh Khan’s death-over prowess. Conversely, ex-Australia all-rounder Tom Moody threw his weight behind Siraj, attributing his IPL struggles to fatigue and the team’s performance. Moody emphasized Siraj’s past contributions to India and IPL, advocating for his inclusion based on historical performance and potential to rise above current challenges.



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Last Updated on April 28, 2024

Senior Sports Copywriter