Cricket expert Ayaz Memon speaks to India Head Coach Ravi Shastri as a preview to the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019.
AM: The World Cup squad consists of 15 players. Is there a case for 16 players?
RS: I am a strong believer of…
RS: Because of the volume of cricket. I mean you have three formats of the game now. At full steam. You have domestic leagues around the world of T20 cricket. Look at the volume of cricket as compared to today what it was five years ago. You are on the road all the time. This is a 45-day event. The World Cup it is not a two-week event. And it is one game after the other bang, bang, bang. Three days off, match, three days off, match, three days off, match. And if you play well, good, otherwise on your bike. So, 15 players there bound to be niggle, there is bound to be injury. You know instead of waiting and calling for the injury. It is not that England is close to India or for that matter other countries of the world. So, 16 would have been absolutely fair. If ICC don't want to pay for it the local boards would have paid for it.
AM: But there is a corollary to do this. You have been part of the technical committee of the ICC etc. Was this ever mooted, was this ever considered?
RS: I mean I was there about 3 or 4 years ago probably didn't think the need at that time. Neither was it raised by any of the team at the time. I definitely feel it is a clear-cut case now for a big event. Not for a bilateral series because there the respective boards will do whatever. If this was a bilateral series we would have 16, for sure.