When the Indian team’s squad for the T20 series against New Zealand was announced, it was clear that now the selectors are looking to the future and are in no mood to repeat the mistakes made in this T20 World Cup next year.
If the team of this T20 World Cup had been there after or during the second part of IPL, then perhaps some good performing youngsters would have got a chance but BCCI had selected the team for T20 World Cup long ago.
Most of the young batsmen and bowlers who performed well in this IPL season were included in the squad. If seen, only Ravichandra Ashwin, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and to some extent Rishabh Pant are the players who are the most experienced in this team.
Interestingly, the Orange Cap and Purple Cap i.e. the highest run-scorer and highest wicket-taker of IPL 2021 were included in the team. IPL 2021 proved to be a big parameter in the selection process.
Let’s take a look at the young players who, on the basis of their performance, forced the selectors to give them a chance.
Rituraj Gaikwad- IPL 2021 winning team Chennai Super Kings opener Rituraj Gaikwad has been included in the team. In this season, Gaikwad scored 635 runs in 16 matches at an average of 45. This includes 4 half-centuries and an explosive century (101) against Rajasthan. He hit 64 fours and 23 sixes in this season. Gaikwad was entrusted with the task of speeding up the innings, which he did well. In the final match, he snatched the Orange Cap from KL Rahul. Rituraj made his debut for India during the Sri Lanka series.
Venkatesh Iyer- IPL 2021 runner-up team Kolkata Knight Riders opener Venkatesh Iyer was given a chance in the T20 team against New Zealand.
It will not be an exaggeration to say that it is because of opener Venkatesh Iyer that Kolkata’s team reached the playoffs of IPL 2021. In 10 matches, Iyer scored 370 runs at an average of 41 in which his best score was 67 runs. In this season he scored 4 half-centuries and also took 3 wickets.
Harshal Patel- Purple cap holder Harshal Patel, who is looking for Royal Challengers Bangalore this season, has also been included in the T20 series against the New Zealand team. In the first match against Mumbai, he made a record of taking 5 wickets in the first match of any season. By the end of the tournament, he was Royal Challengers Bangalore and the best performance by any bowler in IPL in terms of wickets. He took 32 wickets in 15 matches at an average of 14.
Avesh Khan- Avesh is capable of bowling at a fast pace and has picked up 24 wickets in 16 matches for Delhi Capitals in the IPL 2021 season. He was second in the list of highest wicket takers along with Harshal Patel (32 wickets). He was also associated with India’s T20 World Cup team as a net bowler and after losing the second match left for the Syed Mushtaq Trophy.