In a strategic move to ensure consistency and preparation, the Indian cricket team’s squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 will largely resemble the 17-member lineup selected for the upcoming Asia Cup 2023. Team India selector Ajit Agarkar confirmed this approach during a press conference in Delhi on Monday, emphasizing that the World Cup squad’s deadline is set for September 5.
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Speaking to the media, Ajit Agarkar unveiled India’s plan for squad selection leading up to the marquee event. “It is a no-brainer. We have picked these 17 guys (for Asia Cup). There are players coming back from injury. Hope everything goes well for them. September 5 is the deadline (for the WC squad) and there is a camp before we announce the squad. We will have a look at our players and it will be in and around these guys only” Agarkar explained.
Addressing the batting lineup’s flexibility and the contentious number four position, Indian skipper Rohit Sharma emphasized the team’s intent to provide players with the opportunity to stake their claim. “We have got nine ODIs and two practice matches. We will give our players this position and they will try making it their own,” Rohit stated. This approach not only reflects India’s faith in its players but also demonstrates the team’s dynamic strategy for adapting to different match situations.
As India gears up to host the World Cup from October 5, Rohit Sharma expressed his balanced perspective on the team’s status as favorites or underdogs. “Honestly, I do not believe in that idea of being favorites or underdogs. You have to play well to win the matches and the tournament. All oppositions will be here to compete hard, we understand that. It gives you a slight advantage while playing at home. That is it,” Rohit articulated. He added that playing in familiar conditions provides a slight advantage, but all teams are well-versed with Indian conditions.
The 2023 Asia Cup, co-hosted by Pakistan and Sri Lanka, is set to serve as the ultimate testing ground for India’s players. The tournament’s schedule aligns perfectly with the preparation window leading to the World Cup. India’s matches in the Asia Cup will provide valuable insights into the team’s strengths, areas of improvement, and potential combinations.
With the announcement that the World Cup squad will be based around the Asia Cup selections, India has taken a proactive approach to build unity and continuity within the team. This strategy not only minimizes disruptions but also allows players to establish their roles and responsibilities leading up to the highly anticipated World Cup.