On Saturday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced a 19-man squad for the upcoming five-match T20I series against England.
The selectors gave maiden call-ups to promising stars like Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan and Rahul Tewatia.
However, there was one notable omission from the squad list – that of Manish Pandey.
Former India cricketer Aakash Chopra feels Pandey's omission could be the start of the end of his international career.
“Manish Pandey’s name usually features (in Indian limited-overs teams). This brings a question mark over his (international) career because he anyway doesn’t get many chances in the XI and now you are again looking at Pant and other options,” said Aakash Chopra on his YouTube channel.
Manish Pandey has failed to cement his spot in India's limited-over sides with consistency being his major issue.
His last outing came against Australia in a T20I game on 4th December 2020. Manish Pandey failed to make an impact in the game and scored just four runs.
Not just Manish Pandey - Aakash Chopra also reacts on Samson’s exclusion
Apart from Manish Pandey’s exclusion, another decision that was spoken about was Sanju Samson's ouster. The Kerala wicketkeeper-batsman has been replaced by Ishan Kishan in the squad.
Ishan Kishan has been in great touch recently, and smashed a 173 off 94 balls for Jharkhand in a Vijay Hazare Trophy game against Madhya Pradesh on February 20.
Reacting to Samson’s omission, Aakash Chopra felt that the explosive keeper tried his best to stay on top of the shortest format of the game but was unlucky to miss out.
“Two big names which are missing are of Sanju Samson and Manish Pandey. Samson did get his chance with the bat but it did not go well for him. And that’s the problem of T20. It’s very difficult to do well in that format. So Samson has paid the price. He showed glimpses of what he can do but he couldn’t carry on,” added Chopra.
India squad for England T20Is
India squad: Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma (vc), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Ishan Kishan (wk), Yuzvendra Chahal, Varun Chakravarthy, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Rahul Tewatia, T Natarajan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur