Rohit Sharma believes India’s bench strength will compensate for the absence of its injured stars in the T20 World Cup against archrivals Pakistan.
For the marquee tournament in Australia starting Sunday, Mohammed Shami has been added to India’s 15-man squad to replace Jasprit Bumrah, who is out with back issues. Despite the absence of key all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, Rohit insisted the team was ready to take on the challenge.
Rohit told reporters at a press conference in Melbourne that injuries are part and parcel of the game. “Injuries will happen if we play so many games,” Rohit said.
We are trying to create backups and give them opportunities. Our bowlers who have come with us to the World Cup have played enough matches.”
On October 23, India will begin their campaign against Pakistan in Melbourne, where they won the 2013 Champions Trophy.
Having missed the home series against Australia and South Africa because of Covid, Shami was a last-minute replacement.
India will play two warm-up matches against the hosts and New Zealand in Brisbane, where the veteran quick will meet the rest of the squad.
The reports we have heard about Shami have been very positive,” Rohit said.
“Shami seems to be recovering well after Covid. He has had three to four full-intensity bowling sessions.”
He will join Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, and Arshdeep Singh in the team.
Full of energy and dedication –
After recovering from a knee injury, Pakistan have welcomed back pace bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi.
Aaron Finch presented Shaheen Azam with a birthday cake on Saturday, the day before his 28th birthday. Babar Azam said Shaheen was healthy and ready to play.
The way Shaheen has recovered and he is fully fit and dedicated, we look forward to the tournament and his performance,” said Azam.
He added, “Pakistan has always produced good fast bowlers. Shaheen’s return has only strengthened our fast bowling.”
In addition to winning a T20 tri-series in New Zealand, Pakistan lost out on the title last year after losing in the semi-finals to eventual champions Australia.
“The boys are confident, and we will try to carry that momentum into the World Cup,” said Babar, adding that he expected India to play a high-intensity match in their opening match.
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