India’s squad for the upcoming Asia Cup 2022, starting August 27 in the UAE, has raised quite a few eyebrows, especially the omission of seasoned seamer Mohammad Shami. The BCCI announced a 15-men squad for the multi-nation tournament on Monday. The likes of Virat Kohli and KL Rahul were back into the mix while Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel missed out due to injuries.
The decision of preferring Ravi Bishnoi over Shami hasn’t been welcomed by several cricket pundits and former India captain K Srikkanth is one of them.
Speaking on the show ‘Follow The Blues’ on the Star Sports network, Srikkanth said had he been the selector currently, the right-arm quick would have been a part of Men in Blue’s squad for the upcoming Asia Cup 2022.
“In my team, Shami was literally there. If I was the Chairman of the selection committee, I think Shami would have been there and probably, I would not have gone with Ravi Bishnoi. But I still believe that Axar Patel was a serious contender in my team. It would have been a big toss-up between Axar Patel and Ashwin,” said Srikkanth.
Srikkanth, who has also served as the chairman of the selection committee in the past, opined that the current squad is good to go but needs one more medium pacer. Also, he felt bad for all-rounder Axar Patel, who has been named as a reserved player.
“I am very happy for Deepak Hooda – he can bowl a bit, he is a good hitter and he’s a good striker of the ball. What I like about Deepak Hooda is that he is a good striker of the ball, he is a flirter. Otherwise, this squad is a fantastic squad, only feel bad for Axar Patel. I still believe that he’s a good bowling all-rounder, maybe in Australia conditions. I am not going for just the Asia Cup, but yes, this must be a blueprint for the ICC T20 World Cup also,” he added.
All the six teams are categorised into two groups. India, Pakistan, and a qualifying team have been constituted in Group A. On the other hand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan form Group B. The much-anticipated match between India and Pakistan will take place on August 28.