Chief Selector MSK Prasad and BCCI Secretary Amitabh Choudhury announced India’s 15-member World Cup squad at the BCCI headquarters on Monday with a couple of surprise omissions.
Reasoning team selection and the decision to go with certain individuals, Prasad gave the media clarity on what aspects were kept in mind during the selection process, during which skipper Virat Kohli was also consulted.
Excerpts from the press conference
Team not picked based on IPL form
This is our best possible XI. We were close to picking the side that played the ODI series against Australia. So this is not based on the form of the players in the ongoing Indian Premier League.
KL Rahul’s role?
Rahul will serve as a reserve opener in the side and if need be, the management will take a call on whether he is required to bat in the middle order.
No fourth quick
We have got two seam-bowling all-rounders in Hardik Pandya and Vijay Shankar. There is also Kedar Jadhav, who doubles up as a spinner. This was our thinking behind selecting just three specialist quicks.
We have four fast bowlers who will travel with the team. They will be there to help us in the nets and as a stand-by in case there is an injury. These pacers will be named in due course of time.
India open their campaign against South Africa on June 5 at Southampton prior to which they will play a couple of warm-up games against New Zealand (The Oval, May 25) and Bangladesh (Cardiff, May 28)