Sanjay Bangar confirms changes in Indian squad: The Indian batting coach has named at least a couple of changes for the last two ODIs.
After India lost the third ODI of the ongoing series against Australia at Ranchi, India captain Virat Kohli confirmed that the Indian team will have “a few” changes in the next two matches to be played at Mohali and Delhi.
Talking with respect to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, the skipper hoped for the players to put in match-winning performances in the last two ODIs in a bid to seal their berth for the showpiece event.
“The guys who have got out, will try to make the most of the next opportunity. We will have a few changes in the next couple of games, but the idea is to tell the boys to put in match-winning performances, and the boys will be looking to be in top form before the flight to England,” Kohli was quoted as saying.
Speaking during the post-match press conference last night, it was former India all-rounder and current Batting Coach Sanjay Bangar who disclosed that wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been rested for the remaining two ODIs of the series.
It is pretty assumable that India will play wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant in Dhoni’s absence. Having played only three ODIs so far, the 21-year old cricketer will be looking to create a significant impact to be in contention for boarding the flight to England.
Mohammed Shami to be rested?
In what was another change which Bangar talked about was in the bowling division. With fast bowler Mohammed Shami not 100% fit after the Ranchi ODI, India might look to rest him tomorrow.
“Shami suffered an injury on his leg today. So, we will have to see whether he will be fit by day after. If he doesn’t recover, Bhuvneshwar Kumar can play in his place. All these decisions will be taken by the captain and coach before the match,” Bangar was quoted as saying.
Shikhar Dhawan’s form another concern
Opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan’s form has also started to become a concern for India now. Since his last ODI century against Pakistan during the Asia Cup at Dubai, Dhawan has scored 392 runs in 17 matches at an average of 24.50 and a strike rate of 80.82.
In his last five ODIs, the southpaw has scored 41 runs at a dismal average of 8.20 and a strike rate of 56.16. Opening up on the same, Bangar reflected on Dhawan’s consecutive half-centuries during the tour of New Zealand last month and explained why he remains an important player for the Indian ODI squad.
“In the New Zealand ODIs, he had two really good innings, wherein whatever target we had got, he managed to stay not out with 75 in one game and half-century in another,” Bangar pointed out. “Even here, he’s been getting starts. In the last game, he was batting really well, until he erred in his shot selection.
“He’s an important player for us, and we know that if he gets going, he can give us that solidity. It’s also vital to have the right-left combination going, so he’s a hugely valuable player for us, and we are expecting him to come good very soon,” Bangar added.
How Twitter reacted:
— #AA19 (@Stylishshahid1) March 8, 2019
@BCCI selectors should seriously consider Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal as the Openers and Ajinkya Rahane as number 4 for the #CWC19 Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Ambati Rayudu should be dropped ASAP #INDvAUS
— Zubair (@ZUBA1R) March 8, 2019
@SDhawan25 fearless. You will make a big difference in the upcoming world cup. Big fan since 2008 ipl.
— Shyam Vora (@ShyamVora1) March 9, 2019
— Trilok (@TrilokSahu333) March 8, 2019
India and Australia will play the next ODI tomorrow at Mohali.