India has revealed its squad for the highly anticipated Asia Cup 2023, showcasing a blend of experienced stalwarts and fresh talents. The squad announcement has brought forth significant developments, including the return of Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul from injury, along with the inclusion of promising young player Tilak Varma.
Key Players’ Comeback:
Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul, both of whom were sidelined due to long-term injuries, have made remarkable recoveries. Their inclusion in the squad provides India’s middle order with a substantial boost, especially with the impending World Cup on the horizon.
While Iyer has regained full fitness, KL Rahul is carrying a minor injury unrelated to his previous ailment. As a precaution, Rahul might miss a game or two during the Asia Cup, as confirmed by Ajit Agarkar, Chairman of the Indian Senior Men’s Selection Committee. To cover for this potential absence, Sanju Samson has been selected as the backup player.
A notable addition to the squad is the young and impressive Tilak Varma. His maiden international appearance in West Indies caught the selectors’ attention, earning him a deserving ODI call-up.
Continued Trust in Suryakumar Yadav:
Despite facing pressure in the 50-over format, Suryakumar Yadav retains his spot in the 17-member squad, showcasing the team’s faith in his abilities.
Hardik Pandya, the T20I captain, assumes the role of vice-captain in the 50-over setup, ensuring a balanced and experienced leadership presence.
The pace attack will be led by the much-awaited return of Jasprit Bumrah, who will be supported by Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Prasidh Krishna, and the versatile Shardul Thakur. In the spin department, Yuzvendra Chahal has been omitted, while Kuldeep Yadav takes the mantle of the leading spinner. Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel contribute as allrounders.
The decision to exclude Yuzvendra Chahal has been explained by skipper Rohit Sharma, who emphasizes the need for players capable of batting at the lower order. This selection philosophy aims to enhance India’s white-ball cricket depth.
India kicks off its Asia Cup campaign with an electrifying clash against arch-rivals Pakistan on September 2 in Pallekele. The team then faces Nepal on September 4, leading into the Super Fours stage.
- Batters: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Ishan Kishan.
- All-rounders: Hardik Pandya (vc), Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel.
- Bowlers: Shardul Thakur, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna.
- Reserve: Sanju Samson.
With a well-rounded squad that balances experience and emerging talent, India enters the Asia Cup with a promising lineup. The selection choices reflect a strategic approach to address both short-term needs and long-term prospects, setting the stage for an exciting tournament.