Will Kuldeep Yadav play against Afghanistan? Rahul Dravid reveals

India head coach Rahul Dravid answered the two most important queries about the starting XI.
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Team India might have set out to have an undefeated run in the group stage of the T20 World Cup 2024. They might be undefeated in all of their international T20I matches against Afghanistan, whom they will face in Barbados on Thursday, June 20. However, the two selection criteria have drawn a lot of attention in their first match of the Super 8's stage of the ongoing marquee event. In the same vein, India head coach Rahul Dravid answered the two most important queries about the starting XI while also keeping the discussion running.

India's batting master Virat Kohli was expected to repeat his Orange Cap-winning performance of amassing 741 runs in 15 innings in the ongoing T20 World Cup 2024 after being promoted as the opener. However, the swashbuckling batter returned with just one, four, and zero in the three games of the group stages. Following that, debates over whether he should still be open for India were triggered by his performance. A plethora of cricket fans and pundits had opposing views on the matter, with many backing the decision while others arguing that changing their starting lineup might create problems for the other batters.

Following the same, India's head coach and former skipper, Rahul Dravid, hinted at another possible change - that one of the wrists spinners, either Kuldeep Yadav or Yuzvendra Chahal, would likely be included in the India XI for the upcoming match against Afghanistan.

Kuldeep bowled to players like Rohit and Kohli during a long session at the nets on both of Monday's and Tuesday's practice sessions for India. However, it certainly seemed to suggest that the spinner could take the field in the match while anyone from Mohammed Siraj to Arshdeep Singh has to make the way for him.

We might need something different here in Barbados: Rahul Dravid

Furthermore, when asked about the opening lineup, Dravid stated that India will be flexible with their batting order and change it based on the situation. This came one day after India skipper Rohit Sharma stated that the opening combination is not likely to change.

"It's tough to leave anyone out. New York had pace bowlers conditions... slightly different. We might need something different here (in Barbados). Yuzi (Chahal) or Kuldeep (Yadav) could be used here. We are lucky to have players with all-round abilities. We had eight batters but we (also) had seven bowling options. The Pakistan game we moved Axar (Patel), specifically thinking around it... Rishabh (Pant) up the order (at No. 3), lots of thinking goes into it," Rahul Dravid said in the pre-match conference.

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