Twitter divided after Rishabh Pant misses out on India’s World Cup squad

Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed and coach Mickey Arthur will hold a joint departure press conference on April 22.—File

On Monday, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief selector - MSK Prasad and its acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary announced India's 15-member squad for the ICC World Cup 2019, scheduled to be played in England and Wales.

According to the highly placed sources in the BCCI, the 21-year-old Pant will be taken into confidence and explained the reason for his drop out by one of the selectors.

"Six months back, Mohammed Shami was nowhere near being considered for white-ball cricket, but some outstanding performances has ensured he plays his second World Cup". He, however, missed the bus in 2011 and the 2015 editions. The five wise men of Indian cricket, led by M.S.K. Prasad, met in Mumbai on Monday and picked the 15-member squad.

India captain Kohli's pre-IPL statement that the cash-rich league will have no effect on the selections proved to be prophetic as Pant's 245 runs in the T20 showpiece fell short of Karthik's 111 runs.

Why Karthik and not Pant was a question directed at Prasad a few times at the media briefing.

"Definitely a case where we debated in length".

Former India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, 37, is first-choice wicketkeeper. "The point discussed is that Vijay Shankar will bat at No. 4 and so can Kedar Jadhav and we also have a role for KL [Rahul] somewhere".

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At the end of the ODI series against Australia, India captain Virat Kohli said that "just one spot" is up for grabs in the World Cup squad.

"We have been planning soon after the completion of the Champions Trophy (2017) for this". Prasad said that they had looked at all options in the meeting and the unanimous decision was to stick with Shankar at No. 4, at least at the start of the World Cup.

Who will bat at number 4?

All-rounder Kedar Jadhav could also come in handy in such conditions with his part-time off spin.

Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal will also be heading into the mega event for the first time. However, Morgan feels that Pakistan are the second or third favourites for the tournament.

After Hardik Pandya's suspension following the Koffee With Karan controversy, Vijay Shankar was added in the team.

The selectors have also opted to go with all-rounders Vijay Shankar and Hardik Pandya alongside Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami in a pace-heavy bowling attack.

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