3 Indian players who might make a comeback to the limited-overs after ODI series loss
India's limited-overs assignments of the UK tour are done and dusted, with both sweet and sour coming their way. They won it easily against Ireland, comprehensively outperformed the English squad in the T20s but, when it came to the ODIs they found themselves in a couple of fixes and ended up giving the series away to the opposition, which seems to be doing everything right as an ODI setup.
As India now gear up for the upcoming Test series they cannot help but ponder over their selection woes in limited overs cricket. Given that the World Cup is not far ahead it becomes even more pressing to find the right combination sooner, rather than later. Moreover, their next assignment will be in Australia, where they are to play 3 T20Is, 3 ODIs, and 4 Test. Ergo, it becomes all the more important to overcome the inadequacies which have crept into the limited-overs setups.
If the previous trends in the selection panel's decisions are an indication, a few of the players are likely to be axed from both the T20I and ODI squads as a result of poor performances, and the 2-1 ODI drubbing at the hands of England. While T20I setup may only see a lone change in place of Manish Pandey, the ODI squad is likely to see a few faces making their comebacks in place of players like Suresh Raina and Siddarth Kaul. The selections are likely to be made to address the middle-order predicament and a mediocre pace attack.
Here in this article, we try to zero in on those few players who are expected to make a comeback to the T20I and ODI setups soon. The article mentions only those players who were not included in the original ODI squad announced on May 8.
#3 Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant must have felt disappointed after the selection committee made it clear that he won't be a part of the UK-bound Indian squad. Having amassed more than 600 runs in the IPL, it was indeed a befuddling decision to not include him. But now that Indian ODI squad finds itself in deep waters regarding the middle-order, Pant may now see a glimmer of hope. Suresh Raina could not make merry in any of the ODIs and is almost set to lose his spot. Moreover, seeing that India had KL Rahul on the bench instead of Raina in the third ODI to include Karthik suggested that they are reluctant to break whatever heterogeneity they have in the batting lineup by excluding a left-hander. If that is indeed the case, then no better option other than Pant comes to mind.
In the T20Is, he can prove to be the aptest replacement for Pandey, who has time and again failed to impress. In the last T20I against a sub-par Irish attack, Pandey managed just 21 runs in 20 balls and failed to provide the impetus of a late burst. He looked so out of form. Given Pant's fierce stroke-making abilities and pyrotechnics, he is just the right batsman India needs to provide them with the burst of runs in the middle of their innings. It won't be a surprise if we see him included in the limited-overs squads against Australia.