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The former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh is left confused with the unexpected new changes made in the team for the 2nd ODI in Auckland. After the results from the series opener in Hamilton, India was deemed to have certain changes in their bowling squad to win the next game. However, it was unexpected for the team to rest their main bowler, Mohammed Shami.
Although skipper Virat Kohli won the toss at the Eden Park and opted to bowl first. After winning the toss, Kohli was asked about the necessary changes made in the squad for the match. And the 31-year-old announced that India’s ace pacer Mohammed Shami has been given rest for the two-Test games coming ahead.
“Mohammed Shami has been rested, we’ve got the Test series coming up, he’s one of the main bowlers for us,” said Kohli while informing about the changes.
The young pacer Navdeep Saini took the place of Shami while Shardul Thakur who had been proved expensive in the last game bagged two wickets in the 2nd ODI.
In the meantime, the second change made to the team was of Kuldeep Yadav, who was replaced by the leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.
‘I don’t why he is not playing’: Harbhajan Singh on the changes in India for 2nd ODI
With Mohammed Shami being the key bowler alongside Jasprit Bumrah, India has better chances of getting the important wickets in the death overs.
However, the decision of giving him rest in the must-win game left the Indian fans in the confused state.
Harbhajan Singh, the ex-spinner of India and cricket commentator, was himself perplexed with India’s decision.
In the ODI opener, Indian bowlers struggled by the hosts who defeated the Men in Blue by four wickets in Hamilton.
“I don’t why he (Shami) is not playing,” Harbhajan told Star Sports in the pre-match show.
Thakur and Yadav ended up giving away most of the runs in the 50-over game. Kuldeep was able to pluck two important wickets, he gave away 84 runs in 10 overs whereas, Thakur gave away 80 runs in nine overs. The two bowlers were the most expensive in the lost game for Kohli & Co.
Apart from India, the Black Caps also made two changes in their bowling squad for the Auckland game.
The Tom Latham-led team has included the debutant pacer Kyle Jamieson in place of leg-spinner Ish Sodhi.
Whereas, the hosts also called in Mark Chapman to replace their spin specialist, Mitchell Santner in the 2nd ODI at Eden Park.
Former Indian cricketer Kapil Dev backs the inclusion of Navdeep Saini in the Auckland game:
The ex-World-Cup-winning skipper Kapil Dev supported the inclusion of Navdeep Saini.
According to him, the youngster deserves to be in the one-day squad for his pace and excellent wicket-taking abilities.
“You need a wicket-taking option. It is important to get Saini in the side not because India has lost the first ODI but he deserves a place in the side because of his pace and wicket-taking abilities. Look at Bumrah, he forces New Zealand to play him watchfully because whenever batsmen try to attack these bowlers can get wickets,” he told ABP News.
The Delhi-based cricketer has impressed with his pace, bounce and wicket-taking ability in the last ODI series against the West Indies last year.
After the pacing spearhead of India, Bumrah, Saini is another pacer with the talent to bowl in the death overs.