Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Virat Kohli and Kuldeep Yadav in focus as India face Afghanistan in T20 World Cup Super 8 match | Cricket News


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NEW DELHI: Virat Kohli, eager to return to form after a dry spell, and left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav, hoping for an opportunity, will be in focus as India, the favorites, take on Afghanistan in their opening Super 8 match of the T20 World Cup on Thursday.
The main point of discussion ahead of the game is the composition of the Indian team. India must decide whether to stick with the same line-up that succeeded in the group stage or include their top spinner from the past year, Kuldeep Yadav, possibly at the expense of a fast bowler.
T20 World Cup Schedule| Points Table | Stats
At the tournament’s outset, captain Rohit Sharma expressed interest in playing all four all-rounders—Hardik Pandya, Shivam Dube, Axar Patel, and Ravindra Jadeja.
This approach has worked in the bowler-friendly conditions in New York, and Rohit is likely to stick with the team that extends their batting until number 8.

To accommodate Kuldeep, India would need to drop either Mohammed Siraj or Arshdeep Singh, with Siraj being the more likely candidate to be benched.
Recent practice sessions suggest the pitch may favor spinners, strengthening Kuldeep’s case. Additionally, a gentle breeze at Kensington Oval could assist pacers in swinging the ball during the powerplay.

All eyes will be on Kohli, who has yet to score double digits in the tournament. His aggressive approach did not pay off in New York, but he is expected to excel on the better wickets in the Caribbean. At 35, Kohli is known for his high intensity and dedication, as demonstrated during training sessions.
Afghanistan arrived at the Super 8s following a heavy defeat to the West Indies in St Lucia. Their previously dominant bowling attack was dismantled by the powerful West Indies batting lineup.
Captain Rashid Khan dismissed the loss as a minor setback, maintaining that Afghanistan still has a strong chance of reaching the semifinals.
“As a bowler, you need to come up with plans to keep the scoring to under 10. The morale is still pretty high and this loss does not affect us. We have achieved our first goal of reaching the Super 8s and now it is about taking the next step,” Rashid said.
Rashid will rely heavily on left-arm pacer Fazalhaq Farooqi, who has been prolific in the powerplay and is the tournament’s leading wicket-taker with 12 wickets. Farooqi’s ability to swing the ball back in will be a significant challenge for Rohit and Kohli.
Rashid himself will aim to take wickets while maintaining a low economy rate during the middle overs.
India: Rohit Sharma (captain), Hardik Pandya, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Siraj.
Afghanistan: Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wicketkeeper), Ibrahim Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Karim Janat, Rashid Khan (c), Noor Ahmad, Naveen-ul-Haq, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Hazratullah Zazai, Fareed Ahmad Malik, Mohammad Ishaq, Nangeyalia Kharote.
Match starts at 8pm (IST).


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