Ravi Shastri wants IPL performers in India's T20I squad instead of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma
Former Indian all-rounder and head coach Ravi Shastri has opined that the selection of senior members for the upcoming T20 World Cup in 2024 should be based on their current form. There are widespread rumors suggesting that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) intends to field a young team in the tournament in the Caribbean, following India's recent failures in 2021 and 2022.
Virat Kohli has shown a resurgence in his T20 performance as evidenced by his impressive performance in the 2022 T20 World Cup and his current form in the Indian Premier League (IPL 2023). On the other hand, Rohit Sharma is struggling in the shortest format and has unofficially handed over the leadership of the team to Hardik Pandya.
Shastri drew a comparison between the current situation faced by senior players and former cricketers like Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid during his interview on ESPNcricinfo's RunOrder program.
"Players like Rohit, Virat Kohli, they are proven, you know what they are all about. I would go in that [good performers in the IPL] direction so that they get the opportunities, they get the exposure, whilst you keep the Virats and the Rohits fresh for one-day cricket and Test cricket," Shastri said.
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Shastri also believed in the importance of having specialized players for each position in the batting line-up, avoiding the imposition of unfamiliar roles on players. Furthermore, he emphasized the need for a balanced combination of left-handed and right-handed batsmen.
Previously, Shastri had supported the idea of appointing Hardik Pandya as the permanent captain of the Indian T20I team. He firmly believed that Hardik, given his performance with the Gujarat Titans in the IPL, would be able to assemble a well-suited team by placing the right individuals in appropriate positions.
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"Oh, you will get that right with Hardik. He'll get that right where he will want his six bowlers including himself and players for the right numbers," Shastri said. "Just seeing the way he has captained Gujarat Titans, you can see there is a player for a number and there is a role which he will take forward to the Indian team," he added.
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