Aakash Chopra believes Ishan Kishan and Shubman Gill should have been picked in the Indian squad for the upcoming T20I series against Ireland.
The Men in Blue are currently playing a five-match T20I series against the West Indies, with the final game to be played in Lauderhill, Florida, on Sunday, August 13. They will then face Ireland in a three-match T20I series, with the first game to be played in Dublin on August 18.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra was disappointed with Kishan and Gill‘s non-selection for the Ireland tour. He highlighted the lack of preparatory T20Is ahead of next year’s T20 World Cup and pointed out that playing in the Indian Premier League (IPL) is not sufficient to prepare for the global event. He elaborated:
“We were experimenting in ODIs recently and now we are not taking T20Is that seriously as well. I will tell you why? Ishan Kishan and Shubman Gill are both not going to Ireland. I can understand that people need breaks but we have only 14 T20I games from now till the next (T20) World Cup.”
The former Indian opener added:
“Don’t think about the IPL because everyone plays in the IPL and does well too but that does not mean that we win the World Cup. In fact, we don’t win at all. We won the World Cup once when the IPL wasn’t there. So you need to play T20 internationals.”
The squad for the Ireland series primarily comprises players who will be representing India in the Asian Games. Jasprit Bumrah, who is not part of the squad for the continental multi-sport event, will lead the Indian team against Ireland and has probably been picked to prove his fitness ahead of the Asia Cup and the ODI World Cup later this year.
“What are his chances of playing in the Asia Cup if Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul are fit?” – Aakash Chopra on Ishan Kishan
Aakash Chopra was particularly disappointed with Ishan Kishan’s omission from the Indian squad for the Ireland series. He reasoned:
“If I think from Ishan Kishan’s perspective, he won’t play three consecutive matches. He didn’t play the last match, he didn’t play yesterday, he is not going to play today, and is not going to Ireland. What are his chances of playing in the Asia Cup if Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul are fit?”
The cricketer-turned-commentator pointed out that the wicketkeeper-batter would have got a decent break before the Asia Cup even if he had played against Ireland. He observed:
“So he will not play in September as well. So he could have played in Ireland, the matches would have been over by the 23rd and India’s first match (of the Asia Cup) is in September. So you would have got a gap also in between. They are 25-year-old kids, why do they need that much rest is what I am thinking.”
Kishan does not have a great overall T20I record, aggregating 686 runs in 29 innings at an average of 24.50 and a strike rate of 121.63. He has fared even worse in the format this year, managing a paltry 97 runs in eight innings at an average of 12.12 and a strike rate of 89.81.
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