KOLKATA: There was no Rohit Sharma, Mohammad Shami, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel or Hardik Pandya. There are at least three all-rounders vying for not more than two spots in the World Cup squad. The middle-order needs major rework, possibly with Virat Kohli as the anchor. And since the next ODI World Cup will be in India, more spinners could be in contention than fast bowlers for the squad.
Taking all of that into consideration, it wouldn't be far off the mark to say that India were just skimming the surface of a massive selection conundrum in the first ODI at Paarl. The experiments will keep coming. Some will click. Some won't.
But since there is no World Cup qualification at stake (because India are hosts) and not many ODIs this year because of the T20 World Cup, India will not shy away from trying different combinations for the rest of this series.
Despite leaking almost 300 runs in the first ODI, bowling shouldn't be a long-term concern given India have a frontline that can simultaneously play two different formats. As leader of the pace attack, Jasprit Bumrah is expected to play in rotation with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami, Mohammad Siraj and Deepak Chahar. On the spin front, Patel, Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar and even Kuldeep Yadav cover all bases.
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