4 Players who really deserve to make a comeback in India's ODI squad
Team India lost the ODI series 1-2 against hosts England last month. It was skipper Virat Kohli's first ever bilateral series defeat. Under Kohli, Team India has played 52 ODIs so far. The record stands as 39 wins, 12 loss with one game ending in a tie.
The flamboyant leader boasts of a winning percentage of 76.47. But with the World Cup just nine months away, India must address their woes in the ODI line up to have any chance of winning their third World Cup title. Though the top order and fast bowling department look good, the middle order and spin department looks is not so.
The Indian middle order has not been able to live up to the expectations in the past few years. With players like Chahal proving ineffective in the English conditions, it is time for the Indian management to bring back experienced players into the ODI circuit with the World Cup in mind.
Let us now look at four players who really deserve to make a comeback into the ODI squad after missing some of the recent series.
Rayudu made his ODI debut for Team India against Zimbabwe at Harare in July 2013. The Guntur-born batsman has so far represented the Men in Blue in 34 ODIs, scoring 1055 runs at an average of 50.23 with his highest score being 124*.
The right-hander has amassed two centuries and six half centuries with 11 catches to his name. In 134 List A matches, he has scored 4300 runs at an average of 40.95. After representing the Mumbai Indians in the IPL for eight consecutive seasons (2010-2017), he moved to the Chennai Super Kings this year.
He had a remarkable run with the bat for MS Dhoni's men, as he finished the season with 602 runs in 16 matches at a strike rate of 149.75 that included three half centuries and a century.
His stellar performance for the 2018 IPL champion earned him a spot in the Indian ODI squad for the England tour. Unfortunately, he was left out later as he failed the yo-yo test. Now, he is back with the India A squad after passing the yo-yo test and is currently playing in the Quadrangular series involving India B, South Africa A and Australia A.
Rayudu scored a match winning 62*(107) against a strong Australia A side, comprising of bowlers like Billy Stanlake, Jhye Richardson and Ashton Agar during the fifth match of the series and continued his excellent form two days later by top scoring for his team (48 off 75) against India B.
With the middle order woes (ODIs) in mind, India might draft in Rayudu who last played an ODI for India in June 2016 for the Asia Cup 2018 to be played at UAE next month. This might be a dress rehearsal for Rayudu, who is all set to be an indispensable member of the Indian batting line-up in the next summer's ICC Cricket World Cup in England and Wales.
He will be very eager to make a mark after missing the ODI series against England last month.