Former India skipper and Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) selection committee’s ex-chairman Kris Srikkanth has reckoned that all-rounder Axar Patel and star pacer Mohammed Shami should have been included in India’s squad for the upcoming Asia Cup, scheduled to be held in the UAE from August 27.
Srikkanth is unhappy with Axar being kept as a standby in the squad for the Asia Cup and said he feels bad for the bowling all-rounder who played some fine knocks and took crucial wickets in the visitors’ clean sweep of the ODI series against the West Indies recently.
Srikkanth also felt that the squad, which was announced late on Monday, was “pretty good”, although Shami should also have been in the mix.
“I think the squad is pretty good but I think we would need one more medium pacer. We are going with one medium pacer short. Two wrist spinners are fine. I feel bad for Axar Patel, who has missed out. I am very happy for Deepak Hooda — he can bowl a bit, he’s a good hitter and he’s a good striker of the ball,” said Srikkanth on Star Sports’ show Follow the Blues.
“What I like about Deepak Hooda is that he’s a good striker of the ball, he’s a flirter. Otherwise, this squad is a fantastic squad; only feel bad for Axar Patel. I still believe that he’s a good bowling all-rounder, may be in Australia conditions. I am not going for just the Asia Cup, but yes, this must be a blue print for the ICC T20 World Cup also,” he added.
Speaking on Shami, the former India skipper said: “In my team, Shami was literally there. If I was the chairman of the selection committee, I think Shami would have been there and probably, I would not have gone with Ravi Bishnoi. But I still believe that Axar Patel was a serious contender in my team. It would have been a big toss-up between Axar Patel and Ashwin.”
Former India wicketkeeper and ex-chief selector Kiran More felt the Asia Cup had presented Virat Kohli with a great opportunity to get back into form ahead of the T20 World Cup.
“This will definitely be special for Virat Kohli since he now needs to make a comeback; it’s been too many innings. The other batsmen also have been performing really well. Overall, the squad looks good, well balanced. There are good all-rounders too — R Ashwin has been batting well. Definitely, Axar Patel has been performing well through the year too. I like the team combination and I was really happy with Ravi Bishnoi’s selection. It brought a variation to the team. According to me, this is a good team,” he expressed.
“I’m also happy for Arshdeep Singh. He has been performing well in the IPL, against West Indies, where he was the Player of the Series and bowled well. We were in search of a left-arm bowler, who we have found in Arshdeep Singh,” More added.