India squad for Bangladesh series: Hits and misses
Quite surprisingly, India's recent record in T20I cricket has not been great.
They first lost a T20I series against New Zealand by 2-1 while touring and then conceded another series defeat to Australia at home. They then clean swept Windies 3-0 in the Caribbean but could only tie their home T20I series against South Africa.
The reason behind that was their complacency and the mindset of over-experimentation. Bringing in a couple of new faces is fine but the team had completely discarded its old guards and had gone for totally new faces, who will obviously take time to settle down.
However, the team has gone through course correction and brought back Yuzvendra Chahal who has been one of the reasons behind India's success in the last couple of years.
Regular captain Virat Kohli has been rested for the series and Rohit Sharma will lead the side in his absence. The three T20Is will bring another opportunity for India to test their acumen and start finalizing their personnel for the upcoming showpiece event.
Here's a look at the hits and misses of India's squad for the home series against Bangladesh:
Stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma's form
With Virat Kohli being rested for the three match T20I series, Rohit Sharma has been handed over the captaincy. Sharma has been in great nick since the ODI World Cup where he piled up 648 runs, including five centuries.
In the 2019-2021 ICC World Test Championship cycle, Rohit averages the most and is the second-highest run-scorer, just behind Steve Smith, with 529 runs from 4 innings at an average of 132.25, including two tons and one double ton. His strike rate has also been a brilliant 77.45 . Sharma's record as captain is also credible.
Yuzvendra Chahal returns
In a bid to try a few players who had performed well on the IPL or domestic front and to lengthen the batting line-up, India made a strange move of dropping both wrist spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal who had been highly successful for them over the last couple of years.
They then brought in the likes of Ravindra Jadeja, Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar and Rahul Chahar who are all decent batters. However, it did not work well in the T20I series against West Indies and South Africa and hence Chahal returns to the side.
Terrific run of form
India have been in a great run of form this year. They performed well in the ODI World Cup and lost just one match in the league stage. However, their off-day happened to be the semi-final when they were beaten by New Zealand.
Post the WC, the team won in all the three formats while touring West Indies and then beat South Africa 3-0 in the Test series at home. By doing that, they set an unprecedented record of registering 11 successive Test series wins at home, getting past Australia's record.
Virat Kohli rested for T20Is
Keeping his workload in mind, regular skipper Virat Kohli has been rested for the T20Is against Bangladesh. However, he will be back for the Test series. Rohit is a brilliant skipper who remains calm under pressure and has a great record but Virat will be missed nonetheless.
Apart from the captaincy, his rock-solid presence at one drop in the batting order will also be missed particularly when India lose their openers early.
Both of India's leading bowlers in T20Is, Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar are out of the T20 squad due to injuries which is a big loss for the team. At the same time, it also gives an opportunity to players like Deepak Chahar, Khaleel Ahmed and Shardul Thakur to cement their spot.
That said, the double Bs are exceptional both at the top and at the death and the team can leak a few runs in their absence.
Gun all-rounder Hardik Pandya is also recovering from a back surgery and will take some time to be back on the international scene.
Acceleration a worry
Shikhar Dhawan has a T20I strike rate of 129.6. Rohit Sharma's strike rate in this format is 136.9. Virat Kohli has a strike rate of 135.8. While all these figures are not bad by any stretch, being the top three of one of the leading cricket playing nations, one expects them to be somewhere around 150.
KL Rahul is a great option who has a strike rate of 148 in T20I cricket but has not been able to get a look-in because of the opening partnership between Dhawan and Rohit. This is the reason why India don't get off to a flying start often which can be a handicap in this format.
India T20I Squad- Rohit Sharma(c), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Sanju Samson, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant(wk), Washington Sundar, Krunal Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal, Rahul Chahar, Deepak Chahar, Khaleel Ahmed, Shivam Dube, Shardul Thakur
India Test Squad- Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Shubman Gill, Rishabh Pant
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