Delighted to have Vijay Shankar in India’s World Cup team: Virat Kohli to India Today

first_imgVijay Shankar’s inclusion in the Indian team for the upcoming World Cup may have raised a few eyebrows but captain Virat Kohli has complete faith in the the all-rounder’s abilities and is confident that the Tamil Nadu cricketer will be a huge asset to the team in the showpiece event in England and Wales.Vijay Shankar was preferred over Ambati Rayudu in the 15-man squad, which was announced on Monday. Chief selector MSK Prasad justified Shankar’s selection by saying that his ability to contribute with the bat, ball and on the field worked in his favour.India captain Virat Kohli reiterated Prasad’s sentiments and added that he is very excited to have Shankar in the squad, who is expected to fill the No.4 slot in the batting lineup.”Vijay Shankar brings in a lot to the team and hence, I am delighted to have him,” Virat Kohli told Boria Majumdar, Consulting Editor Sports India Today Group.A Billion are pinning their hopes on him. He says he is in the best space possible. Fully satisfied with the team he has. Says he always knew @msdhoni is the glue. Loves the collective excitement he senses in the team. @imVkohli in English and Hindi on @IndiaToday @aajtak pic.twitter.com/k5bMLGXvA4Boria Majumdar (@BoriaMajumdar) April 18, 2019Vijay Shankar’s impressive performances with the bat gave India a bit of confidence in the lead up to the World Cup.Shankar has performed well in the limited opportunities that he has got in the one-day side so far, scoring 165 runs from 9 matches at an average of 33 and a strike rate of over 96.advertisementApart from his ability with the bat, Shankar is also a handy medium fast bowler with a decent economy rate of 5.61. He is also a terrific fielder who can be stationed in the inner circle as well as the outfield in limited-overs cricket which is why he was picked over the 33-year-old Ambati Rayudu, who has been far from impressive with the bat this year for Team India.The Hyderabad veteran made a strong comeback to the limited-overs Indian team in 2018. He amassed 392 runs, including a century and three fities, in just 10 innings at an impressive average of 56.00. However, in 2019, Rayudu has scored just 247 runs from 10 matches at a below-par average of 30.87.Rayudu has been struggling to get going in IPL 2019 as well. The CSK batsman has scored just 138 runs from 8 matches at a paltry average of 19.71.Shankar on the other hand, is a highly-rated cricketer who has come up the ranks quickly in domestic cricket and has forced his way into the Indian team with consistent performances.Also Read | Ordered 3D glasses to watch World Cup: Tweets Rayudu after exclusionAlso Read | Team India may use Vijay Shankar as surprise element at No.4 in ICC World CupAlso Read | Ravi Shastri wanted 16-man World Cup squad, says excluded shouldn’t lose heartAlso Read | 7 first-timers, 2 World Cup-winners in India’s World Cup 2019 squadlast_img read more