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The much-awaited 8th edition of the prestigious T20 World Cup is now less than a month away and this time around the tournament promises to be grandeur as we will witness 16 teams battling it out for the silverware. 

Our focus today is on the Men in Blue, yes they had a shocking exit in the Asia Cup after losing two consecutive matches to Pakistan and the underdogs Sri Lanka. However, their performance against Afghanistan in the dead rubber did impress the cricketing fraternity and the arrival of the King with his 71st century has raised the country's hopes for their second T20 championship title. 

BCCI recently announced the 15-member squad and there were not many surprises as the expected squad made it to the paper. However, the exclusion of Rajasthan Royals’ skipper Sanju Samson did create some controversy. Do you think the explosive batter should have been given a shot in the squad?

Without further delay, let us dive into what Cricwizz thinks would be the best playing Xl for team India in the upcoming T20 World Cup which is set to begin on the 16th of October. 

Openers

Rohit Sharma & KL Rahul

The duo has not been getting the starts they are looking for but given their caliber and incredible stats, we know how destructive the pair can be. The Indian skipper Rohit Sharma has been a bit rash in his shot-making recently and he will have to revise his temperament and take a bit more cautious start at least till he settles down. 

The Vice-captain is the ideal choice at No.2 but given the current form of Virat Kohli, it may be worth having how things work if the opener plays in the No.3 spot this would also mean that the World’s 2nd highest run-getter in the shortest format will get more deliveries to face. This does look a bit unlikely as the latest statement by the skipper suggested that they are not ready to experiment.

Virat Kohli

The former skipper came into the Asia Cup under immense pressure after failing to play his ‘A’ game in recent times. However, it was a treat for the viewers as the 33-year-old managed to score a record 71st century in international cricket and also went on to score the highest individual score by an Indian in the shortest format at the international level. There is no doubt that the onus will be on the King.

Suryakumar Yadav

A valuable player in any line-up, the flamboyant batter has been a great asset to the Indian team in recent times. The 32-year-old has all the shots in the book and if not he is pretty good at the out-of-syllabus as well. He is a treat to the eyes when on the song but the only drawback of the Right-hander has been his inconsistency. He will need to start taking up more responsibility especially considering his position in the line-up.

Rishabh Pant (Wk)

The mighty 24-year-old, who is seen by many as the future of Indian cricket for some reason has been kept in and out of the shortest format. Yes, agreed his stats in the shortest format at the international level have not been in accordance with his real capability, we feel the lad should be made regular in the side in order to adopt and bring his A-game. Veteran Dinesh Karthik is yet to replicate his IPL heroics at the grand stage and this may just clear the path for the Delhi Capitals’ skipper.

Hardik Pandya

What can we say about this Man? The Indian all-rounder has been in the form of his life and inarguably it has been one of the best comebacks a player has made coming back from an injury. With his spot at the international level being at risk, the 28-year-old now is undoubtedly the MVP of the Indian side and his knock against the Aussies a day back just serves as one example among many. He led his side to victory in his debut IPL captaincy season, can he perform the same wonders in the mega event?

Axar Patel/ Ravi Ashwin

A very difficult choice to make for the management and even for the viewers as both the players hold the immense talent and potential. However, as we have seen over time the World Cups have always been about experienced candidates, and Ashwin ticks that box. It is not just the experience but his smart cricket that can help team India get out of tricky situations. We fear the Australian tracks would not have much to offer for Axar and Ashwin can be useful if the situation is demanding. Keep in mind also that Ashwin has five Test centuries under his belt.

Jasprit Bumrah

An inevitable force, Bumrah has been absent in the circuit for some time now owing to injury. However, he was deemed fit to play but did not make it in the line-up for the clash against the Aussies. It is expected that he will turn up for the 2nd T20I. It would be great to see how the pacer tackles this situation. There is no doubt about how lethal he can be and it would be great to see him get on song right in time for the World Cup.

Yuzvendra Chahal

A natural wicket-taker, he has been a bit expensive in his last few outings. Once again his experience is what team India will be relying on. The 32-year-old is just 16 wickets away from becoming the first Indian to pick 100 T20I wickets. He is someone who can demolish the batting line-up but he will have to control the leakage of runs. 

Bhuvneshwar Kumar

He does not have the pace but he can swing his way to victory. The Indian skipper is missing the trick by using him effectively in the powerplay. Kumar is a great asset in the side but he is not someone who can fetch you the wickets or control the runs flow in the death overs. The newer the ball, the more effective he is. If he can finish his quota in the first 10 overs, the team is definitely expected to be in a better position. 

Arshdeep Singh 

The 23-year-old definitely gets the thumbs up ahead of Harshal Patel. His duo along with Bumrah would be a deadly one and his pace and length can be lethal in the Aussie pitches. Harshal does not have the pace and neither his cutters are going to do much damage in the flat pitches. The youngster took the center stage by dropping an important catch in the match-up against Pakistan in the Asia Cup. He will be raring to announce his name loud for the right reasons. 

Do you agree with this line-up? Do you think team India could have a better job in the squad selection? Let us know your comments and feedback. Stay tuned with us for all the latest updates and news revolving around the gentlemen’s game.