So far, it has been a brilliant season for Ishant Sharma in the Delhi Capitals camp. He managed to get that success in the White-ball cricket after a long time, thus, making himself an availability in the mix for the Indian National Cricket Team in limited overs format.
Shockingly, he did impressed selectors more than he could have thought. In a short time, he impressed the MSK Prasad-led selection panel, which kept him on the standby list for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019.
He could well travel England if any regular player in the 15-man squad will get injured. India travelling the UK with three fast bowlers in the lineup while Hardik Pandya will be the fourth seamer option. Alongside them, Navdeep Saini will also travel as a reserve bowler for the team, who is among the five in standby.
“Ishant, Axar, Pant, Rayudu and Saini are aware that they have been named stand-by. The board has informed them about this and while four of them won’t be travelling with the team like Saini, they have been asked to be ready to jump onto the plane whenever needed,” BCCI functionary said to IANS.
They feel that backups are very important for every slot in the team. As the tournament is set to be long, there is a good chance of the player getting injured or suffering niggle issues.
“We were looking at two batsmen, two pacers and a spinner when we decided to name the stand-by players. As you are aware, this year’s format will see every team competing against every other team in the tournament and covering the bases is very important in such long format tournaments,” the functionary explained.
Ishant Sharma’s experience is crucial:
Speaking of Ishant Sharma selection, he quoted that the experience of Ishant will be important for the team. They feel that Ishant Sharma can do the job for the team under pressure, which would be tough for the youngster to find their feet in such a big tournament.
“You cannot buy experience in the market. Moreover, Ishant has matured as a bowler and knows what is required of him. Considering the magnanimity of the tournament, it was felt that he could be the best bet to come in and soak the pressure that comes with playing for the country on the big stage. He has done it in the past and considering how he has excelled over the last year, he can do it again,” he said.
However, as BCCI source said, of late, Ishant Sharma has improved a lot in the white-ball format. The flamboyant cricketer from Delhi also had a stint with the county team in England, which would furtherly press his case.