Players To Watch Out For!
1. Manish Pandey – The 26-year old youngster has been lauded by ‘captain cool’ MSD himself for his well-calculated match winning century in India’s chase of Australia’s 330 in the final ODI. Pandey has been delivering stellar performances for Karnataka for the past few years in domestic cricket.
He scored a brisk fifty in his ODI debut against Zimbabwe last year and was part of the U-19 World Cup squad that won under Virat Kohli’s leadership in 2008.
Although not a part of India’s T20 squad, he was the first Indian to score an IPL century (for RCB in 2009) and even scored a match winning 94* for KKR in the 2014 IPL final.
Having been given a sneak into the ODI squad ahead of Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu, he has already started proving his worth as the future of India’s batting department.
2. Jasprit Bumrah – A promising seamer with a deceiving action, he impressed one and all with his death bowling in the final ODI against Australia.
Picked in the Indian team on the back of fine performances in the Vijay Hazare Trophy and Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy for Gujarat, 25-year old Bumrah bowled the dearly missed ‘yorker’ with precision in the final ODI, a ploy which even experienced bowlers like Ishant Sharma could not consistently deliver.
Who knows, with Bumrah in the teams, Team India might be able to turn fortunes hugely in their favour.
3. Rishi Dhawan – The 26-year old seam bowling all-rounder received his maiden call to the national squad for the one-dayers against Australia at the back of consistent performances over the past few seasons in domestic cricket for Himachal Pradesh as well as in IPL for Kings XI Punjab.
Although his performances in the three ODIs he played have not given great returns, his ability of taking wickets at regular intervals and lusty blows down the order have led the selectors to see him as a potential candidate for the much sought after all-rounder’s role in the team.
Dhawan is not part of the Indian T20 squad but come the World T20, he might be kept in consideration for a surprise call-up.
4. Gurkeerat Singh – The young batting all-rounder from Punjab was picked for India’s ODI squads for the Australia tour and the home series against South Africa on the back of solid all-round display for Punjab, Kings XI Punjab and India A.
However, he has not been able to replicate the same form in his 3 appearances in the national colours so far.
Although not part of the T20 squad, with his aggressive stroke-play and handy off spin, the 25-year old can prove to be a handy resource given the World T20 is happening in India.
5. Barinder Singh Sran – 23-year old left-arm seamer Barinder Sran took many by surprise when he was picked for India’s ODI squad for the tour Down Under.
The Punjab seamer was picked solely on the basis of strong performances in the recent domestic season, having picked up 34 wickets from 11 first class matches.
Although he has only played one match for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL, his 3 wickets in the first ODI impressed one and all.
Although he had modest returns in the remainder of the series, his ability to swing the ball and variety at the death might just lead selectors to draft him in the squad at the last moment.
6. Hardik Pandya – Unlike the rest of the players in this list, Hardik is the who hasn’t played for India yet. Pandya has been drafted into India’s T20 squad for the three-match series Down Under.
A hard hitting lower order batsmen and a regular seamer for Baroda in domestic cricket, he has been a consistent performer over the past few seasons.
However, he grabbed everyone’s attention with his heroics for Mumbai Indians during the last season of IPL. With the T20 World Cup in India just around the corner, the 25-year old has been given a chance, given India’s limited reserves and low rank in the format.
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