Sanjay Manjrekar Ignores Chahal & Picks This Wrist-Spinner For India In ODI World Cup 2023

Renowned cricketer-turned-analyst Sanjay Manjrekar has preferred Kuldeep Yadav as the first-choice wrist-spinner in India’s ODI XI heading into the World Cup 2023. While both Kuldeep and Yuzvendra Chahal are part of India’s 17-member squad for the upcoming ODI series against the West Indies, Manjrekar believes Kuldeep’s ability to take wickets while batters are pushing, rather than resorting to big hits, makes him the ideal spinner for the 50-over format. This article explores Manjrekar’s insights and sheds light on the debate surrounding India’s wrist-spinning options.

In recent years, wrist spin has emerged as a potent weapon in limited-overs cricket, and many teams have embraced the use of wrist spinners to provide breakthroughs and control the run flow. With their ability to impart significant turns and variations, wrist spinners often trouble batsmen, particularly in the middle overs. India has been fortunate to possess two highly talented wrist-spinners, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, who have significantly contributed to the team’s success in ODIs.

During a discussion on ESPNcricinfo’s ‘Run Order,’ Sanjay Manjrekar expressed his opinion on the possibility of India fielding two wrist spinners in their ODI XI for the World Cup 2023. While acknowledging that it could happen on rare occasions, he leaned toward Kuldeep Yadav as his preferred choice over Yuzvendra Chahal. Manjrekar emphasized the need for a spinner who can take wickets while batsmen are pushing rather than relying solely on dismissing batters with big shots.

“I don’t think so. Very rarely, it can happen, depending on the opposition. If there is a real weakness in the opposition to play wrist spin, you have Kuldeep Yadav and Chahal playing in the XI. I see Chahal being part of the squad, but I prefer Kuldeep Yadav when it comes to wrist spin as the spinner in 50-over cricket. I am getting a little technical here. You need a spinner who can get wickets of batters while they are pushing, not hitting the big shots.” Manjrekar stated.

Manjrekar’s preference for Kuldeep Yadav stems from the spinner’s ability to exploit the game’s nuances in the 50-over format. Kuldeep’s left-arm wrist spin adds a unique dimension to the Indian bowling attack. With an impressive record of 134 wickets at a strike rate 31.50 in 81 ODIs, Kuldeep has proved his mettle and contributed significantly to India’s success.

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“In T20 cricket, that is something you see very often. That’s how spinners get wickets. In 50-overs cricket, it’s a game where you push more than a slog. So a spinner capable of getting those wickets is Kuldeep Yadav. So he is my first-choice wrist-spinner in the XI, and then I will be looking at other options.” Manjrekar explained.

Kuldeep Yadav’s recent performances in ODIs have showcased his effectiveness as a wicket-taking option. With 27 dismissals in his last 16 matches, he has demonstrated an ability to provide crucial breakthroughs and maintain pressure on the opposition. His success is not limited to subcontinent conditions alone, as he has also performed admirably in overseas tours, underlining his versatility and adaptability.

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