India’s T20I team is all set to undergo radical changes as the selectors are looking at life after senior players to put together a brand new team in the format, according to reports.
The reports also state that senior players like Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ravichandran Ashwin and Dinesh Karthik will be eased out of T20Is, with Hardik Pandya set to be appointed as the captain.
Ashwin and Karthik struggled with their performances in the T20 World Cup that concluded recently and their future in the format looks bleak. But the BCCI is expected to leave it on Rohit and Kohli to decide on their own futures.
“The BCCI never asks anyone to retire. It is an individual decision. But yes, with just a handful of T20Is scheduled in 2023, most of the seniors will concentrate on ODIs and Test matches in that cycle,” a BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
“You don’t need to announce retirement if you don’t want to. You will not see most of the seniors playing T20 next year,” the source added.
India enjoyed a good Super 12 campaign during the T20 World Cup but got absolutely humiliated by England in the semi-finals as they lost the match by 10 wickets. Head coach Rahul Dravid was seen consoling a visibly upset Rohit Sharma after the match.
While the sources privy to the developments have gone on to talk about transition, Dravid had shared a different perspective during his interaction with the media.
“It’s too early to talk about it right now just after a semi-final game. These guys have been terrific performers for us. Like you said, we have a couple of years to reflect on it,” the head coach said.
“There are some really good quality players here, so absolutely not the right time to talk about this stuff or think about this stuff right now.”
“We’ll have enough games, enough matches as we go on ahead, and India will try and build and prepare for the next World Cup,” Dravid added.
India are set to play only 12 T20Is leading up to the 50-over World Cup next year, starting with the tour of New Zealand this week.
Players like Shubman Gill and Rishabh Pant have been named in the squad and they might be seen opening the batting for India. There is also another talented player in Prithvi Shaw waiting to get his call up after an impressive domestic showing. So, there is no dearth of batting talent in Indian cricket right now.
Skipper Rohit Sharma also had a forgettable outing during the T20 World Cup in Australia. He is already 35 years old and he is not expected to lead India in another mega event two years later, at the age of 37. There is KL Rahul as well, whose strike-rate of 120.75 in the T20 World Cup sums up everything that is wrong with Indian batting right now.
There are other talented players like Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan, who have proved their talent and potential time and again. So, it won’t be surprising if the Indian Selectors decide to give these players an extended run.