'If India Looking for Wicket-takers in T20 WC, then Jadeja, Axar, Ashwin aren’t the Ones': Ex-Opener's Big Remark

The 15-men squad for the Asia Cup announced by BCCI earlier this week has led to a series of discussions in the cricket fraternity. The last few days have seen several former cricketers coming up with their opinions. Many questioned the omission of seasoned pacer Mohammad Shami while the absence of Kuldeep Yadav raised a few eyebrows as well.

It’s being speculated that the squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia is going to be almost similar to the one announced for the Asia Cup 2022. Few names like Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel, who are currently injured, will be back into consideration. However, it’s yet to be seen what the spin department would look like.

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The Asia Cup squad has the classic duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, along with Ravi Bishnoi and Yuzvendra Chahal. Kuldeep, who forms a lethal pair with Chahal, failed to make the cut again.

Former India opener Aakash Chopra, in his latest YouTube video, spoke about the spinners who would board the flight to Australia later this year. He recalled last year’s campaign in the UAE when Chahal wasn’t named in the squad while India failed to make it to the knockout stages.

“Chahal’s name should’ve been in the last year’s T20 World Cup squad, but it wasn’t. You all were surprised and so was I. Rather, it was shocking for me. Following the exit before the knockouts, it was clear that playing Yuzi in the T20s is a must. He has taken 16 wickets in 13 games for India and averages 18.6; that means he’s very good,” Chopra said.

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“And in IPL, he has 27 wickets from 17 games, including a hat-trick that he had taken earlier this year. So, a genuine wicket-taker that India have, it’s Yuzi Chahal. When you play spinners, they have got a couple of roles – first, to be economical, if your fast bowlers are taking wickets. Second, if the pacers aren’t good wicket-takers, then you would want your spinners to control the middle overs and pick up wickets. And that spinner is Chahal,” he added.

Chopra further highlighted that Kuldeep is one of the wicket-taking bowlers and would pick him ahead of Ravi Bishnoi.

“Kuldeep has played just 2 games since last year’s T20 World Cup and picked up 3 wickets. But in IPL, he scalped 21 wickets in 14 matches. If you are searching for a wicket-taking bowler, you must go for a bowler with variations. If there’s a race between Ravi Bishnoi and Kuldeep, I’ll be titled towards the Chinaman bowler,” he added.

Chopra concluded by saying, “If India is looking for wicket-takers, then Jadeja, Axar, and Ashwin aren’t the players. It’s Yuzi, Kuldeep, and Bishnoi who can get you wickets.”

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