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India vs New Zealand Cricket World Cup 2019 Semifinal: Virat Kohli Hints at Possible Playing XI Combination

When he was asked about playing five bowlers in the World Cup 2019 semifinal match against New Zealand, Kohli said it was a possibility.


Updated:July 9, 2019, 10:47 AM IST
India vs New Zealand Cricket World Cup 2019 Semifinal: Virat Kohli Hints at Possible Playing XI Combination
File photo of Virat Kohli addressing a press conference. (Credit: AP Photo)

India captain Virat Kohli gave a hint about the possible team combination for the World Cup semi-final match against New Zealand at Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester on Tuesday.

Addressing a pre-match press conference, Kohli hinted there was a possibility that Ravindra Jadeja may be picked in the playing XI because of his all-round qualities.

When he was asked about playing five bowlers, Kohli said it was a possibility. “Quite possible. We played with 5 bowlers because it gives us depth in batting. We’re up to reviewing it. Otherwise, you just told I got Kane out! I am quite lethal, provided I don’t slip on the field,” he said in a lighter vein, referring to the under-19 world cup match of 2008 when he got Kane Williamson dismissed.

India had played an extra all-rounder in Jadeja in their last league match vs Sri Lanka as it provides the side more batting depth to cover for the middle order woes it has faced in the tournament. Jadeja had been economical in the tie, picking up one wicket for 40 runs in his 10 overs. But he was not needed with the bat as India chased the target easily.

Since Kohli mentioned how five bowlers gives the team more depth, India may pick Jadeja, Hardik Pandya, Yuzvendra Chahal and two pacers - Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami - as their bowling options. Kuldeep Yadav has not been in the best of wicket-taking form in the tournament, same as Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

Kohli also spoke about the mood in the camp ahead of the knockout match. “The mood is great, everyone is relaxed and confident. All teams work hard to get to these moments. Now whoever plays well on the day wins. It’s been a lot of hard work and intense games. There’s only opportunity that lies in front of us,” the skipper said.

Although the batting lineup is more or less fixed, Kohli said he was open to changing the order to suit the situation. “If we’re in a situation where the opening partnership is strong and someone has to go at No. 3 to strike big, we’re absolutely open to do that too,” Kohli said.

The captain was also wary about the New Zealand threat and said that his side needed to play correct cricket and be sure of what they were doing at all times.

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