(Cricket news) The BCCI recently announced a contingent of 20 players that would be rotated in the ODI squad till the ICC Men’s ODI World Cup this year. In an exclusive interaction with Star Sports, Krishnamachari Srikkanth gives his views on how the ODI squad will shape for this year, who will play major roles and what is the approach of the team ahead of the biggest tournament in world cricket.
Speaking exclusively on Star Sports former chairman of selectors Krishnamachari Srikkanth spoke on how special it was for him to be a part of both the 1983 and 2011 World Cup victories he said “What a great feeling it was, to win the 83’ World Cup as a player and then to be chairman of selectors of the team which one the 2011 World Cup is a story I can tell my grandchildren. First of all, the knock played by Gautam Gambhir was phenomenal, that too in the World Cup, congratulations to him, I am proud of him. Superb batting throughout the series. I am making the prediction that Virat Kohli will show us the same heroics in the 2023 World Cup.”
Krishnamachari Srikkanth spoke on how the Indian team will approach this World Cup and how the players should be given the freedom to play their own game, he said “What role clarity do we need to give them? Look at Ishan Kishan for example, how he hits the ball, he has even scored a double century recently. Just tell these players to go out there and play your game, don’t restrict them. Just like Ishan Kishan, you need two or three more players who aren’t afraid to express themselves, that’s number one. All-rounders, batting all-rounders, bowling all-rounders are required in this line-up. There should be a combination of these players in the team. And what about ODI cricket? Just like Gautam Gambhir has played a major role of anchor in the past, the same way Virat Kohli will play that role this time around. He will help players like Ishan Kishan excel just as he got a century when Kishan got a double century. It’s all about freedom, giving your players the freedom, do what you want, play your game even if you get out, that’s the approach the team should have.”
Krishnamachari Srikkanth spoke on who he would exclude/include in the list given out by BCCI and which players could win matches for India in this World Cup, he said “Two of the players won’t be in my list, Shubhman Gill and Shardul Thakur. If you want my medium pacers they would be Bumrah, Umran Malik, Arshdeep Singh and Mohmmed Siraj. Four medium pacers are enough. Shami would be a so-so. I’m speaking as a chairman of selectors and not a fan, I would instead bring in Hooda. And I believe these are the guys that will win matches, what do you want? You want to win matches, you need horses like Yusuf Pathan who will win you matches single handedly. Even if they win you three of the ten matches that’s enough. Do not expect consistency from these players. We have a player like that in this times squad, Rishabh Pant, do not expect consistency from him. I don’t want consistency, I want to win matches, and if these guys can do it single handedly then great. Who will do that for you? Rishabh Pant will do that for you.”
Krishnamachari Srikkanth spoke on who the important players will be when it comes to selecting the squad around the core, he said “Just two important players we need, Ravindra Jadeja and Jasprit Bumrah. Ravindra Jadeja is very important and also Deepak Hooda. Washington Sundar is definitely a certainty in my opinion, Axar Patel maybe a certainty. Need to work on developing Deepak Hooda, we do not need 10 overs from him, we just needs three to four overs. He can be the batting all-rounder. The problem for team India now is that we lack batting all-rounders. At that time we had Yuvraj Singh who was a batting all-rounder, Sehwag another batting all-rounder. Sachin Tendulkar too used to bowl three to four overs. We just need them to bowl three to four overs and not 10 overs. So if we get such a bowler it would be good for team India. Deepak Hooda deserves a chance to showcase his game, look at his at the IPL and then take a call on him if he needs to be there in the reserves. So Washington Sundar, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Hardik Pandya in my team with certainty and can try Deepak Hooda in the reserves.”
Srikkanth also spoke on who he thinks will be the main focus in terms of selecting the team for the World Cup, he said “Key all-rounders. My eyes will be on Hardik Pandya, I expect him go out there and play his game. Bowl well as well as give his best at batting and fielding. Energy on the field, that’s needed and that’s what I see in Hardik Pandya.”
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