Team India made a strong comeback by demolishing Pakistan by 8 wickets in their second game of the ongoing Asia Cup 2018 at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai. Pakistani batsmen were sent crashing by the brilliant Bhuvneshwar Kumar and the surprise package Kedar Jadhav as they picked three wickets each, while Jasprit Bumrah scalped two wickets. However, Rohit Sharma-led Men in Blue were handed a big blow after Hardik Pandya got stretchered off due to an injury.
India have since announced Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar and Sidharth Kaul as the replacements for Pandya, Axar Patel and Shardul Thakur.
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We take a look at three possible changes in the Indian playing XI for the Super Four stage:
1. Ravindra Jadeja IN - Hardik Pandya OUT
Hardik Pandya’s injury is a big blow to the Men in Blue as the flamboyant all-rounder is a force to reckon with in the shorter format of the game. Since the pitch is proving to be a spin-friendly, Ravindra Jadeja could make a comeback to the side given the fact that he is coming after a brilliant final Test match against England in which he scored a memorable century. His confidence would be high and Rohit Sharma would like to cash it. His presence on the field is huge and can contribute in all departments of the game.
2. KL Rahul IN for Dinesh Karthik OUT
KL Rahul’s expulsion from the playing XI raised many eyebrows in the match against Pakistan as the talented batsman has proved himself on several occasions. He was expected to sit out after a long tour of England but didn’t even make the cut for the match against Pakistan. Dinesh Karthik made the XI and played a good knock to take India to the winning line. However, KL Rahul is expected to make an appearance sooner rather than later and when the Asia Cup 2018 is mid-way.
3. Khaleel Ahmed IN – Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Jasprit Bumrah OUT
The young Khaleel Ahmed impressed the cricketing world after his brilliant performance against Hong Kong. He was one of the reason why India survived the mighty scare against the minnows. Khaleel has the ability to the hit the deck hard while swinging the ball as well. With India playing continuous matches due to the tight schedule – either of Bhuvneshwar or Bumrah could be rested for the Bangladesh match.
And if either of India’s two ace seamers are rested then Khaleel Ahmed is more or less guaranteed to make the cut for the final XI.
India take on Bangladesh in the first game of the Super Four stage today (September 21) at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai, UAE.