India's World Cup 2019 squad: Will Navdeep Saini make a surprise entry in the team?
With 14 spots almost certain for the World Cup squad, the hunt for the 15th player will end in today's selection of India's World Cup team.
India's World Cup squad has been the talk of the town since the last few months and all the question will be answered on April 15, in Mumbai, when the selectors announce the squad that will be travelling to England an Wales for the ICC World Cup 2019 between May 30 and July 14.
The team is more or less certain as the playing 11 for India will be stable depending on the playing conditions. We take a look at the certainties and the contenders to make the list.
Virat Kohli: The best batsman in the world, Virat Kohli, will captain the Indian cricket team at the 2019 World Cup.
Shikhar Dhawan: The left-hander has been a mainstay of the Indian ODI team's top order and is a certainty for the World Cup
Rohit Sharma: The Hitman from Mumbai has been the star of the Indian team in the last few years and will be travelling to England for the World Cup
MS Dhoni: The World-cup winning former captain is still an important match-winner for the Indian team and will be the first choice wicket-keeper.
Kedar Jadhav: The unorthodox all-rounder provides stability in the middle-order and can bowl a few economical overs for the team in the middle overs.
Hardik Pandya: Although the all-rounder has been out-of-action from the Indian team in the last six months for various reasons, he has been sorely missed and will be a certainty in the playing 11 in England.
Vijay Shankar: The all-rounder has established himself as a capable batsman and medium pace bowler during Hardik Pandya's absence and will be a certainty in India's World Cup squad.
Kuldeep Yadav: The spinner has been leading the Indian slow bowling attack since the past couple of years now and will play a huge role in India's World Cup campaign
Yuzvendra Chahal: The leg-spinner has formed an unbreakable partnership with Kuldeep Yadav and has put in match-winning performances for India in the last 24 months. He will be a certainty in the playing 11
Jasprit Bumrah: Regarded as the best fast bowler in the world at the moment, Bumrah will lead India's bowling attack in the World Cup.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar: The intelligent pacer will be crucial for India on England's swinging pitches. He will play second fiddle to Jasprit Bumrah in England.
Mohammad Shami: The pacer has made a tremendous comeback into the Indian team in the last 12 months and will be pivotal for India in England.
Ravindra Jadeja: The all-rounder has made it almost impossible for the selectors to ignore him in the last few months. He is a three-dimensional player who can turn matches with the bat, the ball or in the field. Ravindra Jadeja will in all certainty travel with the team.
No. 4 dilemma: India has only one spot in the playing 11 that needs some thinking and it will be a toss-up between KL Rahul and Ambati Rayadu for the spot. KL Rahul has not been in the Indian team for the past few months, owing to a lack of form and inconsistent scores, but he has shown maturity and ability with his batting for Kings XI Punjab in the ongoing IPL. On the other hand, Ambati Rayadu has been playing for the Indian team at the no. 4 slot in the last 12 months, but his form has faded off lately.
Back up wicket-keeper: MS Dhoni is sure to take the gloves in the playing 11, but it is between Dinesh Karthik and Rishabh Pant for the backup wicket-keeper's position in the team. Both Karthik and Pant are match-winning batsmen and can also be considered for the no. 4 slot.
4th Pacer: Considering that the pace-bowling attack will be playing a huge role in India's fortunes on England's pace-friendly wickets, an extra slot for a seamer is also open. Umesh Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed and a dark horse, Navdeep Saini, will be in the fray for the position. Navdeep Saini has impressed with his 150+ speeds and his economical spells for Virat Kohli's Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL 2019.
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