Former Indian skipper Mohammed Azharuddin has joined the bandwagon of cricket experts who are picking their Indian playing XI for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 which is scheduled to begin on May 30 in England.
Azhar feels that Rishabh Pant should be picked ahead of Ambati Rayudu for the long-debated no. 4 batting slot. Several players have been tried for that particular batting position, and in the recent past, former captain MS Dhoni also performed well batting at no. 4. But according to Azhar, Pant’s attacking approach is what gives him an extra edge over the others.
As far as the rest of the Indian line-up is concerned, Azhar didn’t do much shuffling. He said that he would open with Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma at the top, followed by Indian skipper Virat Kohli at number three. His middle-order options are Rishabh Pant at number 4, MS Dhoni at number 5, Kedar Jadhav at number 6 and Hardik Pandya at number 7.
Azhar has his bowling options sorted as well. Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav or Yuzvendra Chahal will form his four bowlers. He further said that Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will not find a place in the Indian playing XI.
Mohammed Azharuddin’s Indian playing XI for the 2019 World Cup:
Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (c), Rishabh Pant, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav / Yuzvendra Chahal.