India’s Squad for ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 Announced
The Indian cricket fans are eagerly waiting for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, which will be hosted by India from October 8 to November 26. The tournament will feature 14 teams, divided into two groups of seven each, playing a total of 48 matches across nine venues.
India, the 1983 and 2011 World Cup champions, have announced their 15-member squad for the mega event on Tuesday, September 5. The squad was revealed by the team’s skipper, Rohit Sharma, at a press conference in Kandy, Sri Lanka, where India are currently playing the Asia Cup.
The squad consists of the following players:
- Rohit Sharma (Captain)
- Hardik Pandya (Vice-captain)
- Shubman Gill
- Virat Kohli
- Shreyas Iyer
- Ishan Kishan
- KL Rahul
- Suryakumar Yadav
- Ravindra Jadeja
- Axar Patel
- Shardul Thakur
- Jasprit Bumrah
- Mohd. Shami
- Mohd. Siraj
- Kuldeep Yadav
The squad has a mix of experienced and young players, with some surprising inclusions and exclusions. The most notable inclusion is that of KL Rahul, who has recovered from his thigh injury and has been training at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru. Rahul is expected to join the team during the latter stages of the Asia Cup and will provide a solid opening option along with Rohit Sharma.
Another inclusion that has impressed many is that of Suryakumar Yadav, who has been in scintillating form in the IPL and international cricket. Yadav has scored 424 runs in 16 matches at an average of 32.61 and a strike rate of 145.01 in the IPL 2023. He has also scored two fifties in four T20Is against Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka, with a highest score of 57 off 31 balls.
The squad also features some young talents like Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan, and Mohd. Siraj, who have shown their potential in domestic and international cricket. Gill has scored 790 runs in 10 matches at an average of 65.83 and a strike rate of 87.36 in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2023. Kishan has scored 516 runs in 16 matches at an average of 36.85 and a strike rate of 149.13 in the IPL 2023. Siraj has taken 18 wickets in six matches at an average of 19.33 and an economy rate of 4.86 in the Ranji Trophy 2022-23.
The squad also has some experienced players like Virat Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja, Jasprit Bumrah, and Mohd. Shami, who have been consistent performers for India in all formats of the game. Kohli has scored 1081 runs in 23 ODIs at an average of 54.05 and a strike rate of 93.51 since the last World Cup. Jadeja has taken 42 wickets and scored 639 runs in 25 ODIs since the last World Cup. Bumrah has taken 51 wickets in 22 ODIs since the last World Cup. Shami has taken 40 wickets in 15 ODIs since the last World Cup.
The squad also has some notable omissions like Shikhar Dhawan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Sanju Samson, Yuzvendra Chahal, and Tilak Varma. Dhawan, who was India’s leading run-scorer in the last World Cup with 648 runs in nine matches, has been dropped due to his poor form and fitness issues. Ashwin, who is India’s leading Test spinner with 413 wickets, has been ignored for the limited-overs format despite his impressive performance in the IPL and county cricket. Samson, who scored a century on his ODI debut against Zimbabwe earlier this year, has been overlooked due to his inconsistency and lack of opportunities. Chahal, who is India’s leading ODI spinner with 97 wickets, has been left out due to his poor form and high economy rate. Varma, who was India’s leading run-scorer in the U-19 World Cup last year with 276 runs in six matches, has been excluded due to his lack of experience and exposure.
India will begin their World Cup campaign against Australia on October 8, 2023, at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai. This will be the Match 5 of the ICC CWC, 2023. The match is yet to begin.
India will then take on Afghanistan at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, Delhi on October 11, 2023. This will be the Match 9 of the ICC CWC, 2023. The match is yet to begin.
India will then face their arch-rivals Pakistan on October 14, 2023, at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad. This will be the Match 12 of the ICC CWC, 2023. The match is yet to begin.
India will play their next five matches against Bangladesh, New Zealand, England, Sri Lanka and South Africa respectively before playing their final league-stage match against the Netherlands on November 12, 2023.
India are one of the favourites to win the World Cup, given their home advantage and balanced squad. They have a strong batting line-up, with Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, and Suryakumar Yadav capable of scoring big runs and chasing down any target. They also have a potent bowling attack, with Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, and Kuldeep Yadav capable of taking wickets and restricting the opposition. They also have some quality all-rounders like Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, and Shardul Thakur who can contribute with both bat and ball.
However, India also have some challenges to overcome, such as their middle-order fragility, their spin-bowling options, and their pressure-handling ability. They will have to find a reliable number four batsman who can anchor the innings and accelerate when needed. They will also have to decide whether to play two spinners or one spinner and an extra seamer depending on the conditions and the opposition. They will also have to cope with the expectations of millions of fans who will be cheering for them in every match.
India have a golden opportunity to lift their third World Cup trophy in front of their home crowd and create history. They have a talented and experienced squad that can beat any team on their day. They have a charismatic and aggressive captain who can lead from the front and inspire his teammates. They have a passionate and supportive fan base who will back them till the end.
Will India be able to fulfill their dream of winning the World Cup at home? Will they be able to overcome their rivals and challenges? Will they be able to create a legacy that will be remembered for generations?
The answers to these questions will be revealed in the next two months as India embark on their quest for glory in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.