With the dust slowly settling over India’s loss to Australia in the World Cup 2023 final, the focus is shifting to the five-match T20 series between the two same opponents starting on Thursday, November 23 in Viazg. The timing of the series may not be ideal, just three days after a demanding World Cup, but it’s an important one in the context of what’s to come in the next 12 months. With the next T20 World Cup just eight months away, the preparation for both teams will begin with these five games.
India have picked most of the squad that played against Ireland three months ago, apart from a few including Suryakumar Yadav, who will be leading this team. From the 15 selected for the series, here’s a look at players, who might be restricted to warming the bench for the whole series:
Ishan Kishan: Ishan Kishan may have done well of late in ODIs, however, he has had a treacherous run in T20Is this year. In eight innings, Kishan has scored just 97, which reduced to 60 in the last seven. Kishan averages 12.1 in T20Is in 2023 and despite being dropped from the playing XI during the West Indies series, he has been retained in the squad but it looks difficult if he will get the chance in the side.
Shivam Dube: Shivam Dube should have actually played all the matches, considering what happens to the side everytime there is an injury to Hardik Pandya, with respect to availability of pace-bowling all-rounders in the country. However, with Tilak Varma set to play at No.4, it will be difficult for Dube to get a place in the side, especially with Axar Patel back in the scheme of things.
Avesh Khan: On spinning tracks, India might go in with three spinners and if on flat tracks, they do decide to go with three pacers, Avesh Khan may find himself behind in the pecking order with Arshdeep Singh and Prasidh Krishna to start in all likelihood and Mukesh Kumar being the third pacer having made his debut in all three formats for India in 2023.
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