The long-awaited moment has arrived, as India are all set to announce their 15-member provisional ODI World Cup 2023 squad, today, on September 5. Chief selector Ajit Agarkar is set to address the press and reveal the squad at 1:30 pm IST.
Last week, Ajit Agarkar flew to Sri Lanka to meet with captain Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid in order to finalise the squad. This provisional selection will also include a few reserve players, given the injury concerns surrounding star players like KL Rahul and Jasprit Bumrah.
It is worth noting that the deadline for announcing the provisional World Cup squad is September 5, with teams having the flexibility to make changes until September 28.
Despite securing a Super 4 birth in the Asia Cup 2023 with a victory over Nepal on Monday, India still grapples with several unanswered questions regarding the team composition for the World Cup. India’s group stage matches in the Asia Cup were both affected by rain, depriving the team of a clear assessment of their squad’s potential.
Following India’s convincing win over Nepal, captain Rohit Sharma said India had an idea of their World Cup squad before heading to Sri Lanka and were sure that the 2 games in the group stage of the Asia Cup wouldn’t give them enough clarity about the possible names. And the rain interruptions certainly did not help, either.
“Look, when we came here, in the back of our minds, we knew what our 15 is going to be like. There were one or two spots that we wanted to have a look at, but we were very clear in our minds that the Asia Cup is not going to give us the complete picture of what the squad would be like, because there were only two games that we had to play,” Rohit said after winning the Player of the Match award for his unbeaten 74 vs Nepal.
Selection committee chairman Ajit Agarkar said while announcing the Asia Cup squad that it was ‘a no-brainer’ that their World Cup squad would be based on the 17 picked for the continental tournament.
This World Cup holds immense significance for India, as it offers a golden chance to clinch the coveted 50-over championship, having come agonizingly close in the previous two editions. Moreover, this tournament will mark a historic moment as India hosts the entire event for the first time, adding further weight to the stakes.