Earlier this week, the BCCI men's selection committee announced India’s 15-member squad for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, which gets underway in India next month.
Barring Tilak Varma, Prasidh Krishna and standby player Sanju Samson, all the other members, who are currently featuring in the Asia Cup, will turn up for India in the quadrennial event.
There were concerns raised over KL Rahul’s match fitness but the Ajit Agarkar-led selection panel included him in the World Cup squad.
Rahul’s selection, however, has sparked a debate among fans and experts that who should don the gloves as Ishan Kishan has performed exceptionally well in recent times.
Sharing his two cents on the same, former cricketer Sanjay Bangar said Kishan deserves a spot in the playing XI as he has grabbed his opportunity by playing a crucial knock of 82 in India’s Asia Cup opener against Pakistan.
“There is a good chance he will play the first World Cup game as well, because it's impossible to keep him out after the kind of innings that he played. He has grabbed the opportunity with both hands and KL Rahul coming back from an injury is always going to be a little risky,” said Bangar while speaking to Star Sports.
According to Bangar, India will have enough batting depth if Ravindra Jadeja bats at number seven and there is no need to play another all-rounder.
Besides Jadeja, India have three more all-rounders in their ranks in the form of Hardik Pandya, Akshar Patel and Shardul Thakur.
“I have always believed that you have got to have quality players who come in when their primary skill is going to be exceptional. I don't think India should be looking out for an all-rounder. If Jadeja is going to be batting at No. 7, I think that's enough batting depth,” he added.
Bangar doesn’t want the Indian team to sacrifice quality bowling in order to get more batting depth.
Notably, the Men in Blue fielded Thakur instead of premier pacer Mohammad Shami in their Asia Cup group-stage match against Pakistan.
“Let's not sacrifice the quality of bowling because then you are leaving a Shami out and getting a Shardul Thakur in. I wouldn't go in that way but there is a chance that India might actually have somebody like a Shardul Thakur just to have a little more batting depth,” he remarked.