ICC World Cup 2019: Anil Kumble comes up with his 15-member India squad
Kumble picked Khaleel Ahmed ahead of Umesh Yadav.
Updated - Mar 15, 2019 5:59 pm
Former India Test captain and coach Anil Kumble came up with his India squad for the upcoming World Cup in England and Wales and as it is always expected from the serious student of the game, Jumbo’s 15-member team had interesting inclusions and exclusions. Kumble, India’s highest wicket-taker in international cricket with over 950 scalps, also gave the reasoning behind his picks and he relied heavily on youngsters while making the squad. The 48-year-old played in four WCs himself (1996-2007) and was the highest wicket-taker in the 1996 edition.
Kumble picked the two established openers, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, to launch the innings. There is no surprise in that for they have been serving Indian cricket for some time now and despite some lack of form in the recent times, the duo still stands a destructive pair, as it was seen in Mohali. At No.3, Kumble’s pick is captain Virat Kohli. Although the former leggie feels Kohli can bat at any position in the line-up, he also thinks that the best should come in the top three.
Kumble picks MS Dhoni for No.4 position
For that all-important No.4 position for which India are yet to finalise a pick after the disappointment with Ambati Rayudu, Kumble picked veteran MS Dhoni with whom he had played in the 2007 WC, according to CricketNext. Kumble believes Dhoni can do it for India at that crucial position and he picks Kedar Jadhav at No.5.
Kumble’s next list of players includes all-rounder Hardik Pandya and pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar who also has a decent batting hand. Pandya has been picked as the fourth seamer in the team while the former great also gives Bhuvneshwar, who has missed games in the recent past, a chance in the WC.
In the spin bowling department, Kumble’s picks are Chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal – the Kul-Cha pair. The former spinner then goes for Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah as the main pacers. Both have been in good form in recent times and will be two of India’s major hopes at the showpiece event.
Among the four other players that Kumble, there lied Rayudu on whom Jumbo still had faith. Surprisingly, Kumble also picked Khaleel Ahmed ahead of Umesh Yadav thinking the left-arm seamer can add variety to the attack. Rishabh Pant also found a place in Kumble’s squad ahead of Dinesh Karthik despite his recent blunders behind the stumps while Vijay Shankar completed the list.
Anil Kumble’s 15-member India squad for World Cup 2019:
Virat Kohli (captain), MS Dhoni (wk), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Khaleel Ahmed, Ambati Rayudu, Rishabh Pant and Vijay Shankar.