Kuldeep Yadav hasn't played a game since IPL 2022, while Harshal Patel missed the first three T20Is against West Indies due to an injury. Picture Credit: ANI and Twitter/@imkuldeep18
- The fourth T20I between India and the West Indies will take place in Lauderhill on Saturday (August 6).
- India is currently 2-1 up in the five-match series after winning the first and third T20I.
- Kuldeep Yadav and Harshal Patel can get a game today in order to present their case for selection in India’s Asia Cup team.
The ongoing five-match T20I series between India and West Indies has now moved to the United States, with the final two games scheduled to take place in Lauderhill on Saturday (August 6) and Sunday (August 7). India have won the first and third T20I against the two-time former T20 world champions to take a 2-1 lead and would like to continue that good form to win one more match and seal a third consecutive away T20I series.
After the end of this ongoing T20I battle, India’s next assignment in the shortest format will be the Asia Cup tournament, the team for which is scheduled to be selected on Monday (August 8). Since the Indian team management is in experiment mode these days, they are likely to test a few more players before deciding on the team for the upcoming major events.
Since the Asia Cup T20 tournament will take place in the United Arab Emirates this year, spinners are likely to play their part in the matches which are scheduled in Dubai and Sharjah. And so, considering that aspect, after testing the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravi Bishnoi, and even Axar Patel, Indian team management might give a chance to Kuldeep Yadav as well in the last two games to present his case and see what he has to offer.
The Kanpur-born cricketer was impressive in IPL 2022 where he finished as the leading wicket-taker for Delhi Capitals, but he hasn’t played in any game since then. So, his chances are slightly diminished, but if he gets a chance to present his case in the final two T20Is against West Indies and he excels well, then the permutations might change.
Another player who was also almost a certainty till some time ago but now will have to fight for his place is Harshal Patel. And the 31-year-old will hope to make the most of the opportunity if it comes his way. The right-arm pacer, who has played in 17 T20Is for the Indian team since the end of the T20 World Cup last year, missed the initial few matches due to an injury, and there are still question marks over his availability as there’s no official update on his fitness up till now. But he would be eager to go out there in the middle and present a case for himself.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah are certain starters for India, and with Hardik Pandya fully fit to deliver with the ball now, Harshal will face competition for the third frontline seamer spot from Deepak Chahar, Arshdeep Singh, and Avesh Khan.
Apart from the duo, it will be interesting to see how Shreyas Iyer and Deepak Hooda perform in the upcoming games. Only one of the two is likely to be in the 15 once the big boys return, so the duo will be eager to get some runs under their belt and present a strong case for their selection.
The Indian team management and fans will hope that skipper Rohit Sharma will be fit enough to feature after he got retired hurt in the last game due to a back spasm.
India’s likely playing XI for the fourth T20I against West Indies: Rohit Sharma (C), Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Deepak Hooda, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav/R Ashwin, Harshal Patel/Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh.