T20 World Cup: Indian selectors face problem of plenty | Cricket News

MUMBAI: The national selectors, along with skipper Virat Kohli, will convene via video conference over the next 24 hours to select a squad of 15 cricketers for the ICC T20 World Cup to be played in the UAE but hosted by India starting next month.
The selectors will also pick a handful of players extra to travel with the team as standbys. The BCCI had earlier decided to cap the number of standbys to five but may now add a few more keeping the possible ‘third wave’ in mind.
Between the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the recent tour of Sri Lanka, a good chunk of India’s potential T20 squad picks itself. Where the selectors may possibly have to tread carefully is in trying to ensure that individual reputation does not supersede individual talent, especially given the finicky format.
“A good batsman may not necessarily be a good T20 batsman. It’s an oxymoron of sorts but it’s true, nevertheless. Reputations don’t mean anything in this format and the closer our selectors can get to blurring that line, the more formidable a unit they can chalk out,” say those tracking these developments from the closest quarters.
For instance, if a call has to be taken between picking Sanju Samson and Ishan Kishan, what barometer can the selectors possibly use? Both young players with aggressive mindsets, apt for the format, both are wicketkeeper-batsmen.
A potent mix of strike-rate and consistency perhaps? In IPL-2020, Samson scored at a strike-rate of 158.89 – among the highest in that edition – but managed just 375 runs in 14 innings. Kishan, on the other hand, enjoyed a slightly lesser strike-rate of 145.56 but scored 516 runs in 13 innings, some of them single-handed efforts to win a game. Kishan averaged a neat 57.33 compared to Samson’s 28.84 and saw his team all the way to the final where they lifted the trophy.
Shikhar Dhawan, otherwise ignored in the format, has been raising his hand once again and how. In IPL 2020, Dhawan was the highest scorer in the tournament with 618 runs from 17 innings at a strike-rate of 144.73. In the half-completed 2021 edition too, the Delhi batsman remains at the top of the table.
Can the selectors continue ignoring him?
Another example could be a comparison of sorts between Washington Sundar and Varun Chakravarthy — not that Sundar is necessarily in contention, given the current status of his injury. Sundar picked just eight wickets in IPL 2020 but bowled at a miserly economy rate of 5.96 while Chakravarthy picked a healthy 17 wickets at a slightly higher economy rate of 6.84.
Shardul Thakur’s all-round plucking will weigh heavier now but heavy enough to compete with an adept Hardik Pandya?

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