IRE vs IND: India’s Best XI For First T20I

IRE vs IND: A short 2-T20I tour by India of Ireland is crucial for a number of Indian players who will look to strengthen or make their claim for a spot in the T20 World Cup squad. The two T20Is will be played on June 26 and 28 in Dublin.

Only a few changes have been made from the squad that took on South Africa: Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer joined up with the Test side in England; in their absence, Rahul Tripathi got his maiden call-up while Suryakumar Yadav and Sanju Samson return to the national squad. Yadav was out injured and Samson was dropped.

India Squad vs Ireland: Hardik Pandya (c), Bhuvneshwar Kumar (vc), Ishan Kishan, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Sanju Samson, Suryakumar Yadav, Venkatesh Iyer, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishnoi, Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Umran Malik

India played the same eleven in all five T20Is vs South Africa and are expected to stick to the same combination in the first T20I vs Ireland; they will need to replace the slots opened up by Pant and Iyer’s departure.

Image Source – Hindustan Times

Here is India’s best XI for the first T20I vs Ireland:

Openers: Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan

While Kishan was the top-scorer in the series vs South Africa, Gaikwad largely struggled to settle at the international level, managing 96 runs in 5 innings at an average of 19. But, the management is expected to persist with the CSK opener.

Middle-order: Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda

Suryakumar Yadav, who missed the SA series due to injury, will slot in the eleven straightaway given his thunderous form for the Mumbai Indians and his superb numbers since making his India debut – average of 39 and strike rate of 165 in 14 T20Is.

The debate will be around who should bat at number 4 as there are three contenders for the slot: Rahul Tripathi, Sanju Samson and Deepak Hooda. All three of them were in brilliant knick in the IPL, but Hooda also provides an off-spin option; also Hooda was in the SA squad but Tripathi and Samson weren’t, so you’d expect the management to give Hooda a go before the other two.

Lower-order: Hardik Pandya (C), Dinesh Karthik(wk), Axar Patel/Venkatesh

The trio of Pandya, Karthik and Axar in the lower order is likely to be the same as played vs SA. Though, India may opt to go with only one spinner and replace Axar Patel with Venkatesh Iyer

Bowlers: Harshal Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Avesh Khan

India’s bowling helped them level the series vs South Africa after being 2-0 down as they bowled out the Proteas for 131 and 87. If there were any concerns about Avesh Khan, the LSH pacer put it to bed with a four-wicket haul in the fourth T20I.

Arshdeep and Umran may have to wait further for their India debuts, barring an injury to any of these four. While Ravi Bishnoi is also an option India would want to see more of.

Also Read: Sanjay Manjrekar Picked Three Indian Spinners For T20 World Cup

Jatin Khandelwal

Hi, I am Jatin Khandelwal. Cricket writing came accidentally for me with an undergrad engineering degree. With opportunities first as a freelancer and then full-time, and experience with time, I have grown in the role. The Cricket Lounge is a place where I can thrive with the best of my abilities.

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