Siddarth Kaul in the India squad for Ireland and England T20I series
Team India will play two T20Is in Ireland and three against England.
Updated - May 8, 2018 6:38 pm
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the India squad for the two-match Twenty20 International series in Ireland that is scheduled to be played late in June and for the three-match series that they play against England in early July. Virat Kohli will lead the side in their ever bilateral series in Ireland and also against the Brits. The Men in Blue will play the two T20Is on June 27 and June 29 in Dublin against the Irish. They will then land in England and kickoff the long tour with the first T20I on July 3 and the other two on July 6 and 8.
Right-arm pacer Siddarth Kaul has been rewarded for his consistent show in the Indian Premier League (IPL) with a spot in the team. He replaces left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat who played the T20I series on the tour of South Africa. Kaul has been a wicket-taker who has the ability to both bowl with the new ball and in the death. He can swing the ball as well as get in the Yorkers when it matters the most. Unadkat, on the other hand, was the most expensive Indian pick in the IPL 2018 and has failed to justify his tag.
Kaul while representing the Sunrisers Hyderabad had picked 16 wickets in the 2017 season and has 13 wickets in 10 matches in the ongoing season. At SRH, he has emerged as the perfect partner for Bhuvneshwar Kumar who also happens to be the lead pacer for the Indian team.
From the South Africa squad, the selectors have also dropped left-arm spinner Axar Patel and pacer Shardul Thakur and they have been replaced by young off-spinner Washington Sundar and Umesh Yadav. While Umesh is bowling at his best in the IPL and is the purple cap holder at present with most wickets to his name, in Sundar’s case his performance for the Indian team has been given a greater importance over his current form in the T20 league.
The team has quite a few options for the middle-order that has struggled to produce the kind of performances expected on a consistent basis. Rohit and Dhawan will open the batting, Suresh Raina walks in at No.3, then skipper Virat Kohli, based on how well he is batting for the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL, MS Dhoni should bat on No.5. Then there are the likes of Dinesh Karthik, Manish Pandey and KL Rahul who prefers to bat in the top order but could be accommodated here since he is batting really well in the IPL and there is no slot on offer otherwise.
Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav would want to forget their outing in the T20 league as they’ve not been able to translate the kind of execution and form that was expected of them. Bhuvi and Jasprit Bumrah are without a doubt two best white-ball bowlers at present and that makes this team a force to reckon with. The fact that Hardik Pandya is also in the race for the top wicket-taker’s position in the IPL further boosts the confidence of the team as they can then rely on him to deliver the four overs and play an extra batter in conditions that will most certainly test them.
India squad for the T20I series against Ireland and England:
Virat Kohli (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Suresh Raina, Manish Pandey, MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthik, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Washington Sundar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Siddarth Kaul, Umesh Yadav