Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir reckons the team selected for the T20 World Cup should be backed no matter what happens. Each team has the provision of making changes to the final 15-man squad until October 10.
Several players have been out of form after being selected for the World Cup. This includes Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Even Hardik Pandya, who is playing as a specialist batsman, has had poor returns in the matches played so far. However, this doesn’t warranty a last-minute makeover of the squad, as per Gambhir.
“I would not replace anyone, absolutely not. For a very clear reason – when you pick up the 15, I’m sure they were selected because of faith and not because of hope. Because selecting players on hope might not take you anywhere.”
“If you were absolutely sure at the selection meeting, that these 15 can win us the T20 World Cup, go with it, irrespective of their good form or bad form. There are big players who are in good form but end up not having the best at T20 World Cup,” Gambhir said in a conversation with ESPNcricinfo.
“Don’t get overawed” – Gautam Gambhir on making last-minute changes
The ones who were axed prior to the World Cup – Yuzvendra Chahal and Shikhar Dhawan – have been performing very well for their respective teams in the UAE leg of IPL 2021. Therefore, the fans are calling for the inclusion of these players but the selectors shouldn’t budge, according to Gautam Gambhir.
“The 15 – I would not change unless and until there’s an injury. Don’t get overawed. Don’t get into this theory of if someone isn’t performing well, he can be replaced by someone else. That is the problem in Indian cricket, to be honest,” Gambhir further added.
India kicks off its T20 World Cup campaign on October 24 with a clash against arch-rivals, Pakistan, at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.