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3 Indian cricketers who made it to the World Cup squad after a brilliant IPL season

Over the last 12 years, quite a few have been fortunate to make it into the WC squad after a great IPL season.

Hardik Pandya
Mumbai Indians’ Hardik Pandya. (Photo by IANS)

India is a country with a population of over 134 crores, the second-highest in the world. Millions of these people either play or watch cricket with great passion. Thousands of them take up this beloved sport as their profession. But it is only 15 chosen ones who make it into the Indian Cricket team squad. The competition to get into the team is always quite high. And when it is the World Cup year, the fight for the spots gets way too intense.

The mega-event comes only once in two years (T20I) or four years (ODI). For many, it is a long-cherished dream to make it into the final cut and help the nation win the coveted trophy. With the emergence of the Indian Premier League (IPL), there are a lot many options that could be considered for the World Cup squad. Over the last 12 years, quite a few have been fortunate to make it into the prestigious squad after a great IPL season.

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Here we look at three Indian cricketers who made it to the World Cup squad on the back of good IPL performances:

1. Mohit Sharma

Mohit Sharma
Mohit Sharma. (Photo Source: IANS)

With his performances in the 2012/13 Ranji season, Mohit Sharma hogged all the limelight and was picked up by the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL auction. This was around that period when Team India was struggling to find some good pacers who can excel in all the conditions. Mohit made his IPL debut in 2013 and fared really well.

In his debut season, he picked up 20 wickets in 15 games for CSK. His impressive performances first earned him a call in the ODI team and then in the T20I team. The pacer only got better the next year where he picked up 23 wickets in 16 games and thus won the Purple Cap. As a result, he was picked in the World T20 squad in 2014 and also went on to play in the World Cup 2015 squad where all the Indian bowlers did exceptionally well.

2. Varun Aaron

Varun Aaron
Varun Aaron. (Photo: Twitter)

Varun Aaron came into the spotlight at around 2011 when he and Umesh Yadav were known to be the two pacers in the domestic circuit who consistently clocked about 150 kmph. The duo was fast-tracked into the Indian team but was highly inconsistent in the initial few days. Aaron was in and out of the Indian team but has been a regular feature in the IPL.

His best season came in 2014 when he was a part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) set up. Aaron finished as the leading wicket-taker for the team in that season and accounted for 16 scalps in 10 matches. Thus, even though he seemed to be an uncertainty in the Indian squad until a few weeks before the IPL, he managed to make it into the World T20 2014 team.

3. Hardik Pandya

Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya (Photo by IANS)

The IPL has to be credited for unearthing some of the finest talents from the domestic circuit. Hardik Pandya is one of those players who was picked up by the Mumbai Indians in 2015. He was regarded to be one of the cleanest strikers of the ball back then. At around this point in time, India was looking for another finisher apart from MS Dhoni.

He scored 112 runs in 8 innings at a strike rate of 181 in 2015 and caught everyone’s attention. Pandya got his break in the following year where he made his T20I debut. He continued to feature in the T20I side since then. Pandya made it into the World T20 2016 squad only after the great IPL season in 2015. It is in this World Cup where he bowled an unbelievable last over against Bangladesh.

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