No place for Kuldeep Yadav in the Harbhajan Singh’s team

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Indian legend off-spinner Harbhajan Singh left’s out Kuldeep Yadav from the playing XI for the game against Australia. Kuldeep Yadav has no doubt been one of India’s top performers in ODIs this year as the stats confirm. In just 17 matches in 2023, the left-arm spinner has grabbed 33 wickets to be the team’s leading wicket-taker in the format so far.

However, Harbhajan Singh feels it should be R. Ashwin how should be preferred over Kuldeep Yadav for the selection. Ashwin who made a parachute entry to the ODI World Cup 2023 squad has played only 2 games in the last 5 years in India.

Talking about the Kuldeep vs Ashwin debate Harbhajan says,

People are realising that skill is more important. It’s not like an offspinner shouldn’t bowl to right-handers. Even I mentioned that Ashwin should play if the opposition has more left-handers, but that is what the management thinks? But if I was captain of the team or part of management, I would pick my five best bowlers and Ashwin would be first or second on that list

If I had to pick today, it would be (Jasprit) Bumrah, (Mohammed) Shami, (Mohammed) Siraj, (Ravindra) Jadeja, Ashwin.”

Ravi Shastri also had his say on Kuldeep Yadav

Ravi Shastri says the inclusion of Kuldeep in India’s playing XI isn’t a given. According to him it will depend a lot on the opposition unless the wrist spinner has a brilliant start to the campaign.

Former Indian head coach Ravi Shastri said,

You have to be flexible,” Shastri said. “I will go one step ahead and watch the oppositions and think how they will play whom. And now that Ashwin is in the 15, it makes a challenge for the XI all the time.”

Kuldeep is not a certainty, unless he comes in and starts off brilliantly. Yes, there is no question about Kuldeep’s performance. He has been bowling at his best after a long time but on a certain day and on a certain track, if the pitch is dry, you would want only two fast bowlers because there is Hardik Pandya as well,

Team India to commence their ODI World Cup campaign against Australia on 8th October in Chennai. The team combination will depend a lot on the conditions as well. Traditionally, Chennai has a histroy of slow and dry wickets which favours the spinners. This may temp the team managnment to event play all three spinners in the playing 11.

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