T20 World Cup 2012 : India has their thinking caps on
cricfan | September 26, 2012 at 05:27 amby
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India will next take on the Aussies on September 28; and MS Dhoni has a problem, apparently a problem of plenty. The encounter against England has made India spoilt for choices. Two spinners, Harbhajan Singh and Piyush Chawla, were splendid against the Brits. And mind you, both were backup options (yes, Harbhajan too). So who makes way when India’s best spinner in recent times, R Ashwin, returns for the Super Eight rounds?
Exit Chawla; end of debate. Chawla’s figures of two for 13 in four overs are surely worth a captain’s hug. But he can’t be in at the expense of Harbhajan. Imagine if Ashok Dinda and L Balaji had flattering figures too. What would MS Dhoni have done with Zaheer Khan? But Zaheer has to return because he’s Zaheer, India’s bowling Tendulkar. Having Zaheer in the eleven, regardless of a slump, gives India a pep. Exit Dinda/Balaji; end of debate.
Also, putting England through a spin cycle and demolishing them conveniently might not always be a true indicator of where a team stands.
But Dhoni is faced with another dilemma and this certainly is not a happy one. What does he do with Virender Sehwag? Word is that the opener is battling an injury and not for the first time at that in a T20 World Cup. In the 2009 World T20 in England, Sehwag’s injury was shrouded in secrecy. Eventually, Rohit Sharma opened in his place but failed to fire when it mattered.
According to a report, Sehwag didn’t bat during a three-hour practice session on Tuesday. Fact that Irfan Pathan was padded up before everyone has raised more doubts about the opener’s availability. The report also attributed sources in the team as claiming that Sehwag was being rested, so that he didn’t aggravate his injury before the Australia game.
Dhoni had reiterated that Sehwag was not sidelined because of any injury but merely ‘rested’ during the game against England.
However with Sehwag skipping nets, his fitness status remains hazy. The opener along with R. Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh, was also subjected to a random dope test.
“It’s a routine procedure at every major ICC event and nothing more than that,” said Dr. R.N. Baba, the Indian team’s media manager.
Not that his return offers a quick-fix solution. He will have to come in at the expense of a bowler, which means doing away with the five-bowler theory. Irfan opened the batting against England, giving India that option. Yuvraj Singh can perhaps be called on for two overs if required. It remains to be seen if MS Dhoni will take a bold gamble and persist with a five-man attack even if Sehwag is fit and available for selection. We may recall that in the inaugural 2007 T20 World Cup, which India won, Sehwag didn’t quite set the stage ablaze.
Rohit is the man in form and a possible opening option here. One had better leave Dhoni alone in the next two days. Hush, the captain could be thinking.
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