Time for Kuldeep Yadav? India coach Rahul Dravid discusses Super Eight selection issues

India’s campaign at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup moves to the Caribbean after a run of matches in the USA, and that change of venue brings with it some big selection decisions to make.

Head coach Rahul Dravid spoke to the world’s media ahead of his side’s opening Super Eight fixture against Afghanistan on Thursday, and received a number of questions about the likely make-up of his India XI.

The India squad for the tournament contains four spinners in the 15, but only two were utilised in New York, bowling just nine overs across the three completed matches.

But the Super Eight conditions could well lend themselves to a change in team balance, with Dravid acknowledging that Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav are firmly in contention for selection.

“It's tough to leave anyone out," Rahul Dravid said. "New York had pace bowlers' conditions … we might need something different here in Barbados.

“Yuzvendra Chahal or Kuldeep Yadav could be used here. We are lucky to have players with all-round abilities, we had eight batters (in the New York games) but we also had seven bowling options.”

Pant, Ponting dissect clinical India victory | T20WC 2024

While the balance of the India squad suggests that the plan was always to go spin-heavy with the line-up heading into the second half of the tournament, Dravid says that the decision-making needs to be flexible enough to adjust to what’s actually in-front of them, not just what the plans are on paper.

“We feel we've got the experience and the knowledge and also the ability to counteract different situations that may present themselves,” he said.

“You might have all the stats, you might have all the data, but on the day, sometimes conditions can be very different to what you think it is. Just because a particular ground has produced certain number of runs in the past, or even ten days prior, it can be very different because the preparation of a wicket, the weather, so much can change.

“Even in the two or three days leading into a particular game, a lot can change that can force you to recalibrate and rethink. I think we will have to do that, be quick and smart and be able to do that and assess the conditions. I hope we will do that.”

Ravi Shastri partakes in India's fielding awards ceremony | IND v PAK | T20WC 2024

Whatever the India XI is, there will always be the option for in-game adjustments, and Dravid was keen to point out that such flexibility hasn’t been left behind in the Big Apple.

“Each situation is unique, I can't set it in stone, I believe in flexibility. In the Pakistan game we moved Axar Patel, specifically thinking around it. Then with Rishabh Pant up the order at No.3, there’s lots of thinking goes into it.

“I don't think we have that flexibility in Test cricket. In T20s where it is a lot about match-ups, you see it happening more.”

EXCLUSIVE SCENES. Experience behind-the-scenes visuals from the India v Pakistan clash at the T20 World Cup 2024 with Cricket legend Ricky Ponting.

The India Squad

Rohit Sharma (c), Hardik Pandya, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson, Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj

Super Eight Fixtures

vs Afghanistan – Thu, 20 June 2024, Barbados, 10:30 AM local time

vs Bangladesh – Sat, 22 June 2024, Antigua and Barbuda, 10:30 AM local time

vs Australia – Mon, 24 June 2024, St. Lucia, 10:30 AM local time

Jomboy’s cricket guide for baseball fans watching the T20 World Cup 2024

ICC Men's T20 World Cup, 2024T20 ICC Men's Cricket WC 2024NewsMen's NewsIndiaAfghanistan vs India - Super Eight - Match 3 - 6/20/2024