New Zealand vs India 2020: 3 players who deserved a spot in the Indian ODI squad
In what will be a serious blow for the Indian batting set-up, 'Hitman' Rohit Sharma has been ruled out of the upcoming ODI and Test series against New Zealand. India's limited-overs vice-captain suffered a calf injury during the fifth T20I at Mount Maunganui where he led the side as Virat Kohli opted for a break. The 32-year-old who amassed 140 runs during the recently-concluded T20I series will, unfortunately, miss the remainder of India's tour of New Zealand.
Mayank Agarwal, who is yet to make his ODI debut, has been named as Rohit Sharma's replacement for the three-match ODI series which begins on February 5th at Hamilton. Although India's ODI squad looks strong across all departments, there are several players who missed out on a spot. Let us look at three talented players who deserved a spot in the Indian ODI squad.
3) Sanju Samson
Despite being omitted from the T20I squad initially, he was later roped in as a replacement as Shikhar Dhawan was ruled out of the entire New Zealand tour. As India sealed the five-match series having won the Super Over at Seddon Park in the third game, they opted to test their bench strength and fielded Sanju Samson in the last two fixtures. The Kerala wicket-keeper batsman succumbed to the pressure of expectations, and couldn't make much of an impact in both the games managing just eight and two runs respectively.
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The 25-year-old, who has demonstrated his T20 credentials on several occasions in the IPL, is an equally exceptional player when it comes to List A matches. He proved that during a 2019-20 Vijay Hazare Trophy fixture against Goa having achieved the records of highest List A score in Indian domestic cricket as well as the highest List A score by a wicket-keeper in the world when he scored 212* off just 129 balls. It is unfortunate that such a player has to miss out on the ODI spot once again!
Another talented and in-form player who was expected to make the cut was young Shubman Gill. The talented Punjab batsman started off India A's tour of New Zealand with a half-century in the one-day warm-up practice game has made a strong case in the recently concluded drawn first unofficial Test against New Zealand A. The 20-year-old who top-scored for India A in the first innings having scored 83 runs, continued his excellent run in the second innings amassing a spectacular double-century (204*) thereby helping his side save the Test match after a first-innings collapse.
Given his love affair with the New Zealand pitches and especially after being named as a replacement for Rohit Sharma in Tests, he was expected to join his 2018 Under 19 World Cup-winning skipper Prithvi Shaw in the ODI squad. Unfortunately, that isn't the case for the Kolkata Knight Riders player whose wait for his third ODI cap continues after being left out of the squad.
Currently, if there is one player who is yet to play a game for India at the highest level despite scoring heavily across all formats in the domestic circuit, then it certainly has to be this man. Known for his consistency with the bat in the IPL as well as other domestic tournaments, the 29-year-old is likely to be a valuable addition to India's batting line-up. The Mumbaikar is someone who could provide stability to the innings- be it as a proper middle-order batsman or even as a back-up opener.
His temperament, solidarity and shot-selection make him an ideal candidate for all formats of the game and it is fair to say that Suryakumar Yadav has exhibited these traits while playing for India A, Mumbai or even in the IPL. Unfortunately, the talented batsman couldn't make it big in his career so far despite coming close to a Team India call-up on several occasions.Published 04 Feb 2020, 09:01 IST