My thoughts on India’s T20 World Cup 2024 Squad

India's T20 World Cup Squad: find out who made the final cut and the challenges ahead for Rohit Sharma and the team.

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As we edge closer and closer to the highly anticipated T20 World Cup, the release of the nations’ final 15 players has created conversation among fans and cricket lovers alike. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the squad selection of India, the supposed favourites of the tournament, has been a particular talking point in the cricketing community, with the side making surprise inclusions and exclusions in a bid to get their hands on the coveted trophy.

In what could be one of the last chances for Rohit Sharma to get his hands on a major international trophy as Indian captain, the boys in blue are back after a disastrous defeat at the hands of Australia in the ODI World Cup just last year. With a healthy mix of youth and experience, Dravid’s men will be hoping to ward off the memories of the last few tournaments in which have been India convincingly beaten in the crucial moments. India’s World Cup Squad

Rohit Sharma (c), Hardik Pandya (vc), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj

Reserves: Shubman Gill, Rinku Singh, Khaleel Ahmed and Avesh Khan

Prior to the publication of the Team India squad, questions were asked about whether Virat Kohli deserved to make the plane to the United States and the Caribbean, with many experts calling for selectors to move on from Kohli and look to the pool of young players to replace him. Former Indian cricketer turned pundit, Sanjay Manjrekar left Kohli out of his chosen Indian squad in favour of Sanju Samson, as he feels the wicket-keeper batsman is better suited to the number 3 position. Although his strike rate has been put under the microscope, Kohli’s form in the IPL this season makes him an unsurprising inclusion in the side and will once again undoubtedly be a key figure for India in the tournament. India’s World Cup Squad

What will come as a welcomed addition to the side is the reintegrating of fan favourite leg-spinner, Yuzvendra Chahal. With India seemingly looking to focus on packing up their bowling cartel with spinners, the likes of Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel and Ravindra Jadeja will be key on the Caribbean pitches. India’s World Cup Squad

Another surprising, yet welcomed inclusion is Sanju Samson, who, to the delight of the fans, has finally been selected as part of a major tournament for India. After blistering form shown in the IPL, the captain of the high-flying Rajasthan Royals forced his way into the conversation of being included in the final 15, accompanying the returning Rishabh Pant as one of two wicketkeepers in the side.

Rishabh Pant Sanju Samson
Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson (Source: X)

Although, there are a handful of notable names left out of the final squad. With the inclusion of Sanju Samson, KL Rahul is one of the stars forced to stay home as his teammates take to the pitch. Despite playing as India’s main wicketkeeper in the absence of Rishabh Pant, BCCI chief selector Ajit Agarkar stated that the squad were looking for players who can play in the middle order; a job which was suited more for Samson and Pant as opposed to KL.

The omission of Rinku Singh is another discussion point that has got the cricket community talking. When Rinku Singh burst onto the scene in the IPL last year for the Kolkata Knight Riders, it all seemed set that he would be the next biggest hitter in Indian cricket, with the 26-year-old making himself a known face in the Indian team. Although he hasn’t quite been able to hit the same heights this season in the IPL, he was still expected to be named in the final 15. Although somewhat controversially, he was named only as a reserve in the squad. With fans and ex-players expressing their frustrations regarding his exclusion, BCCI announced that Rinku’s exclusion was down to tactics rather than form or general play.

Perhaps more frustrating for Rinku’s supporters, BCCI’s decision to select Hardik Pandya over Singh is one that has not gone down well with followers. Despite Pandya’s poor form in the IPL after returning to the Mumbai Indians, his selection as an all-rounder has puzzled fans, with many believing that his poor form does little to warrant a spot in the side over the likes of Rinku Singh.

On the other hand, it can’t be denied that Hardik’s all-round abilities are unmatched, with his efforts for India in the past pulling them out of problematic situations. His experience and energy in the dressing room and on the field will be embraced by his team and the fans, who still consider him a reliable batsman in the key moments.

Will it be another tournament of hope that all comes crashing down when it matters the most, or will this finally be India’s year to conquer the world once again?

READ MORE: Winners, Losers, & Surprises: the IPL season so far

Renesh Krishnan
Renesh Krishnan
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