India World Cup 2019 Team: Pant and Rayudu among Standbys
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India World Cup 2019 Team: Pant and Rayudu among Standbys

Rishabh Pant and Ambati Rayudu, who were excluded from India’s 15-member squad for World Cup 2019, were named among the standbys on Wednesday.

Pace bowler Navdeep Saini also found a place in the list of three back-ups for the mega-event starting in England and Wales on May 30.

“Just like ICC Champions Trophy, we have three standbys. Pant and Rayudu are the first and second standbys while Saini is the bowler in the list. So if anyone gets injured, as per requirement, one of the three will be going,” a senior BCCI official said on Wednesday.

Pant and Rayudu’s exclusion from the squad had created quite a stir on Monday. While Sunil Gavaskar called Pant’s omission surprising, the snub to Rayudu was questioned by Gautam Gambhir.

Dinesh Karthik, 33, was given the second wicketkeeper’s slot over the rising 21-year-old star, ending days of speculation over the role.

While Khaleel Ahmed, Avesh Khan and Deepak Chahar will be travelling with the team purely as net bowlers, they can also be drafted in if the management feels so.

“Khaleel, Avesh and Deepak are not designated standbys. In case of bowlers, that possibility is there but when it comes purely to batsmen, it will be either Rishabh or Rayudu,” the official said.

India, ranked number two behind England in one-day games, reached the semi-finals of the 2015 World Cup where they lost to Australia.

India are scheduled to play their opening World Cup match on June 5 against South Africa in Southampton.

India squad

Virat Kohli (Captain), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, K.L. Rahul, Vijay Shankar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (WK), Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami.

April 18, 2019

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