The 2019 Cricket World Cup is scheduled to be held at England and Wales from 30th May 2019 to 14th July 2019. This is supposed to be the 12th edition of the mega cricketing circus and is also the fifth time that the World Cup is being held in England and Wales, following 1975, 1979, 1983, and 1999 World Cups.
Only 10 teams have qualified to participate in this tournament even though there are 12 ICC Test-playing nations, which marks it the first time in Cricketing history that an ICC Full member has been left out. Hence, along with England as the hosts, Australia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and West Indies, all make the cut, while Zimbabwe and Ireland the other two Test playing nations are left out after failing to qualify for the event in the qualifiers.
Australia have been the most successful side in Cricket World Cup history by winning it five times, while India and West Indies have both won twice. Pakistan and Sri Lanka are the other nations that have won the World Cup at least once.
India are considered to be one of the favorites to lift the trophy this year along with the hosts England, defending Champions Australia and 2015 runners up New Zealand. The BCCI is scheduled to announce the squad for the 2019 World Cup on the 15th of April, and Team CricWizz tries to predict and select the 15-member squad that would be best suited for India to win back the World Cup for the third time. Below is the list of players, Team CricWizz expects to make the cut for the World Cup:
There is surely no doubt that any of Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, and Virat Kohli will be in the playing eleven of the Indian squad for the World Cup. Having been the match-winners and one of the main reasons why India have been so dominant in recent years, this Indian batting top-order has definitely cemented their place in the World Cup squad.
Although Shikhar Dhawan is out of form in the past few months, but he is expected to gain back his form in the second leg of the IPL before the World Cup starts as we have seen his recent performances for Delhi in the 2019 IPL. Both Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are also expected to be back amongst runs after a recent slump in form
Much has been debated as to who will occupy the number-4 spot in the Indian batting order. There have been various players trying to stake their claim in the said position in the recent past, be it Ajinkya Rahane or KL Rahul, Yuvraj Singh or MS Dhoni, even Suresh Raina, Hardik Pandya, Ambati Rayudu and Dinesh Karthik were tried in the crucial position, however, none of them were able to cement the place and thus the debate is still ongoing as to who will be the one who will solve this crisis.
However, going from the recent form in the four months, Team CricWizz expects Vijay Shankar to play at number-4 for India as he looks to be solid and can play the anchors role when the team is in need. He can also up the tempo as per the game situation and hence would be the best option presently for Team India in the said position.
The role of a wicketkeeper-batsman would be donned by former India skipper MS Dhoni who is expected to bat at number five. Along with him, Kedar Jadhav and Hardik Pandya are expected to play the role of the finisher for the team along with their all-round capabilities. This will give India six to seven bowling options and if anyone of their bowlers have a bad day, they can always turn to either of Hardik, Kedar or Vijay to complete the remaining quota of overs.
The duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav are expected to be the lead spinners for Team India in the World Cup. Since the World Cup matches are scheduled to be played in English summers, one can expect a lot of turn and wickets from the duo. In a pitch that will aid pacers, one would have to make way for a third seamer depending upon the number of left-handed batsmen of the opposition and also the form of the bowlers.
Both Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar are certain to be in the playing eleven in England. Bhuvneshwar can extract more swing in England as the overcast conditions in England help swing bowlers a lot. Further, the experience of death bowling will aid the duo in England where the dimensions of the most of the ground are small and the pitch will be a batting friendly, which is very similar to that of India.
KL Rahul will be in the team as a third opener and might get a chance to play against teams such as Afghanistan and Sri Lanka where India would look to give rest to its regular players. He can also fit in as a number-3 or number-4 if needed by the team management.
Mohammed Shami will head to the tournament as the third seamer of India and is expected to play in the matches where the pitch and conditions are pacer friendly. His constant nagging for wickets and the ability to unsettle the batsman through his skiddish bouncers would be an asset to the team in English conditions.
Ravindra Jadeja should be included in the team as a spinning all-rounder. He can come into the team if either of the two leading spinners is injured or out of form and can also be handy with the bat along with his impressive fielding skills.
Rishabh Pant should be selected as the second-choice wicketkeeper. He has the X-factor in his batting which can help India win from a tricky situation. He can play in any position, as a number-4 batsman who would need to anchor the Indian innings or even a number-5 number-6 batsman wherein he will be in charge to finish the game and would need to be a pinch-hitter. Although he can play at number-4, but number-5, number-6 position suits him well where he can express himself and dictate the bowlers at his own will.
PLAYERS MISSING OUT
Considering the current form, Team CricWizz decides to leave out Ambati Rayudu and Dinesh Karthik from the World Cup Squad that is travelling to England. Although Ambati Rayudu has played some important innings for India in recent times but his consistency is a major worry for the team.
Further, Dinesh Karthik has always donned the role of a finisher successfully in recent times but he has often failed when the team is in pressure and needs to rebuild the innings. He has often been dismissed through soft dismissals in pressure situations that has further complicated the team to win the match. Thus, he too is excluded from the 15 that travel to England.