The just concluded T20I series between India and England that was bagged by hosts produced some riveting display of cricket. The two sides are the world’s top two teams in the format as far as the ICC rankings are concerned. Considering their records in T20Is since 2016, these two sides are arguably the favourites to lift the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup later this year.
As the World Cup will be played on similar surfaces in India, this series presented a great opportunity for both teams to try their best combinations. Both the team managements were keen on trying certain players in certain positions. The hosts tried some different combinations but the visitors were quite consistent with their choices.
But, both teams have some players who might not end up featuring in the World Cup squad. It is expected that the team management will figure their preferences as far as their first-choice XI is concerned. Therefore, let’s take a look at-
5 Players from the INDvENG T20I series who may miss T20 World Cup 2021
1. Sam Billings
Sam Billings has been one of the unluckiest cricketers in the England limited-overs set-up. The Kent player has been around the England team for more than five years now. However, the right-handed batter has only played 21 ODIs and 30 T20Is. The player had recently also said that England’s white-ball setup is one of the hardest to get into.
He has not featured in any of the matches against India and possibly won’t cut it into the World Cup squad. England doesn’t even need another wicketkeeper in their side, apart from Jos Buttler as Jonny Bairstow will be there in the squad already. Interestingly, Billings has also been named the vice-captain of the T20I series when Buttler or Ben Stokes were not around.
Billings’ record in T20I is also slightly underwhelming. In the 27 innings which he has played so far, he has only managed 391 runs at an average of 17.00. Though his strike rate of 133 is impressive, these numbers and lack of opportunities indicate that Billings might not get shortlisted for the big world event later this year.
2. Reece Topley
The left-arm fast bowler Reece Topley made his T20I debut way back in 2015. But, until 2021, he has only six T20I matches for his national team. Regular injuries and a couple of inconsistent domestic seasons meant that he didn’t feature in a lot of matches. But, he received a call-up for the series against India.
At the time, it seemed like a good pick. Apart from Sam Curran, England doesn’t have any other left-arm pacer. In T20 cricket, it is always a good option to have a left-arm seamer in play which allows the bowling unit to pose some different questions to the batsmen. However, as the series progressed, Curran was the only preferred choice to operate as the lefty.
This is also because Curran gives an option of added batting prowess towards the death overs. His experience of playing in the IPL also gives him an edge over Topley to make it to the England squad for the World Cup. By the time, the team goes to the World Cup, it is unlikely that Topley will be in recurring.
3. Shikhar Dhawan
The left-handed batsman has been one of the prolific performers for the Indian team in white-ball cricket. However, his ODI numbers are far more superior to his T20I numbers. Ahead of this series, Indian captain Virat Kohli had revealed that the team will be backing Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul to open the innings, hinting that Dhawan has now become the third-choice opener in the shortest format.
But, Dhawan got an opportunity to play the first T20I when Sharma was rested. But after the first game, Dhawan was dropped from the side. Ishan Kishan, who is a young and brooding batsman, was given a chance to show his skills in the second match. The youngster provided with the right kind of firepower, which the Indian batting unit was looking for.
Dhawan’s strike rate in T20s has been questioned often, but that isn’t the case with Kishan. The Jharkhand youngster has the attributes to make it to the World Cup squad. This brings a question whether Dhawan would at all be required in this format beyond this series. We could see him not featuring in T20Is for India again.
4. Deepak Chahar
The right-arm pacer is one of those players who has become a household name after featuring in the Indian Premier League. He has been Chennai Super Kings’ frontline pacer for the past three seasons. His success in the IPL has also given him an opportunity to play for India. For the little time he has played, he has also picked 18 wickets in 13 matches.
However, a deep look at his stats will make you realize that he also has a figure of 6 for 7, a record for any bowler in T20Is. Even after doing that, it seems now that he might not be in contention for the World Cup. It is more to do with where he bowls and prefers to bowl. Chahar’s biggest strength is with the new ball.
In all the T20s he has played, his assigned job has been to use the new ball and pick wickets. He has not been used a lot in the middle overs and death overs. With Bhuvneshwar coming back in the side, the Indian team has someone to do the same job as Chahar. But, along with Bhuvneshwar, there are some other bowlers, versatile enough to be used in the death overs. This is a major reason why Chahar could miss the squad for the T20 World Cup.
5. Axar Patel
The last month has been quite crazy as far as Axar Patel is concerned. The left-arm spinner took 27 wickets in his first three Tests. But, he hasn’t been that effective with the white ball as he had been with the red ball. After featuring in the first match, he was dropped from the line-up. This also means that he might not be the one team management is looking at for T20 WC.
In addition to that, Patel was in the squad in the first place because of the injury to star all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja. Both the players are quite similar in nature, but with Jadeja, the Indian team has a proper batsman playing at no.7. That isn’t the case with Axar Patel. He has done well in the IPL with the bat, but Jadeja’s skills as a batter are far better.
In addition to this, Patel has never been a wicket-taking bowler. He has been used quite intelligently by the skippers he has played under. He has been used as more of a bowler who can create pressure. With Jadeja coming back, it is unlikely that the team management would want two similar kinds of bowlers in the side for T20 World Cup.
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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