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MSK Prasad reveals the rationale behind Mayank Agarwal’s selection in World Cup squad

Mayank has not been included in the ODI squad for the West Indies tour.

Mayank Agarwal
Mayank Agarwal. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The Indian team had a pretty decent ICC World Cup 2019 given that they managed to reach the semi-final of the tournament. The Men in Blue lost just one match in the league stages to England and then lost to New Zealand in the semis in a closely contested match that was played over two days.

During the tournament, the Indian team also caught the bug of injuries which started with Shikhar Dhawan fracturing his thumb when a bouncer hit him during the Australia match and despite hopes of him getting fit in time for the knockout phase, the management had to call in Rishabh Pant as a cover, who later replaced him.

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The second replacement for the Men in Blue came in the form of Mayank Agarwal after Vijay Shankar injured his toe in net sessions after a yorker from Jasprit Bumrah smashed him in his phalanges. However, controversy erupted as Ambati Rayudu was the designated player kept on standby to replace any injured players and by calling in Pant first and then Mayank, he was overlooked twice. This forced him to call it time on his professional cricketing career and he retired in disappointment.

We had to find a backup opener as KL Rahul hurt himself in a match

Recently, the Indian squads for the West Indies tour were announced and in the same press conference, chief selector MSK Prasad was asked a question on why Mayank Agarwal was called in to replace Vijay Shankar, despite the fact that he was not on the list of standby players and why Rayudu was overlooked.

“When Shankar was injured, Rahul got injured attempting a catch. That time, we needed a backup opener. We looked at options & picked Agarwal,” Prasad said. Incidentally, Mayank Agarwal lost his place in the ODI team for the West Indies tour, given that Shikhar Dhawan was included in the squad.

But Mayank held his spot in the Test squad as the first-choice opener along with KL Rahul. The ODI and T20I teams also see the return of Manish Pandey and Shreyas Iyer, who were not in the scheme of things for the ICC World Cup. Dinesh Karthik lost his place in ODIs, while Kedar Jadhav managed to hold on to his spot.

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