Sunil Joshi has picked in-form spinner Kuldeep Yadav ahead of Yuzvendra Chahal in his India squad for the 2023 ODI World Cup at home. The former India selector reckons Chahal has lost his mojo and wants him to play domestic cricket to regain his form.
The statement came as Chahal picked up three wickets in two ODIs this year – 2/43 against New Zealand and 1/58 against Sri Lanka. In 2023, the 32-year-old has also managed to pick four wickets in as many T20Is.
Speaking to ESPNCricinfo, Joshi said:
“Over a period any bowler will go through that phase. Probably Chahal is in that phase. Someone like Chahal, who is not able to get game time in the middle, probably he should request the team management to go and play domestic cricket. Match time is very important for him to get back into form. That should be the ideal preparation for Chahal.”
When Joshi was asked whether he would pick Chahal in his World Cup 15-member squad, he replied:
He explained himself, saying:
“Jadeja will be in my squad. If he is not in good rhythm, you have a backup in Axar. Then probably I would look at Washy [Washington Sundar] or Ravi Bishnoi if I have to have one more legspinner because Bishnoi is more consistent and has a quicker arm action and he's a better fielder than Chahal.”
“Kuldeep Yadav is in a space where he is absolutely fine” – Sunil Joshi
Sunil Joshi hailed Kuldeep Yadav for his sublime form with the ball. He wants him to continue his consistent performances.
“Kuldeep Yadav is in a space where he is absolutely fine. He needs to be more consistent. He needs to be looking at the tactical part. He needs to know how he will approach each team and venue. The World Cup is in India but every venue has a different dimension, in terms of pitch, soil and climate. He has to prepare himself accordingly.”
The 28-year-old picked up five wickets in two ODIs against Sri Lanka and then scalped six scalps in three games against the Kiwis. Yadav returned with two wickets in two games against the Blackcaps in the ongoing T20I series.
Joshi also believes that Yadav will play a big role in the upcoming Tests against Australia. He said:
“If India have to win against Australia, Kuldeep will play a major part.”
Kuldeep Yadav picked up eight wickets and contributed a crucial 40 runs in his last Test outing against Bangladesh.
The opening Test of the four-match Test series will begin in Nagpur on February 9.
India’s squad for the first two Tests against Australia: Rohit Sharma (Captain), KL Rahul (vice-captain), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KS Bharat (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), R. Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat, Suryakumar Yadav.
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