Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan has revealed his Team India playing XI for the first match of the ICC T20 World Cup 2022 against Pakistan. Irfan has dropped Rishabh Pant from his playing XI while he made a strange choice of adding Deepak Hooda. Arshdeep Singh was replaced by Harshal Patel in his playing XI. Pathan is going with only five bowling options with Hardik Pandya being the fifth bowler and off-spin of Deepak if needed.
“See, in my opinion, if you’re playing the first match, you need to have some experienced bowlers including one spinner. So, from the top, my playing 11 would be – Rohit, KL Rahul, number three – Virat (Kohli), number four – Suryakumar Yadav, number five – Deepak Hooda, number six – Hardik Pandya, number seven – Dinesh Karthik, number eight will be a right arm leg spinner so it would be (Yuzvendra) Chahal, 9 to 11, here there will be Jasprit Bumrah, Harshal Patel and along with that you can go for Bhuvaneshwar Kumar,” Pathan told Star Sports, after the team was announced.
“So, there will be a combination here, three fast bowlers out of which two are quality fast bowlers, who will be able to bowl at the death as well. And I will make sure that I have the combination and the liberty to choose from the three fast bowlers, even Arshdeep (Singh) to handle the death bowling. So, in my opinion, in the playing 11, the spinner is clear, it’s just whether I can make space for Arshdeep in the team,” he added.
Irfan Pathan’s Playing XI: Rohit Sharma (C), KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar, Deepak Hooda, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik (WK), Harshal Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal