Kuldeep Yadav or Yuzvendra Chahal? Sunil Joshi chooses his choice for ODI World Cup 2023

Former India spinner Sunil Joshi has given its verdict on who should be in India’s 15-man squad for ODI World Cup 2023 between Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. India, in particular, will host the upcoming edition of the global showpiece, and spinners will no doubt play a big part, but the team needs to find the right combination with quite a few options.

Speaking of Kuldeep and Yuzi, both spinners are currently in an opposite state regarding their forms. Kuldeep, with his back-to-back match-winning performances, has found his mojo again. He has shown huge improvements from his action, accuracy and variety. On the other hand, Chahal seems to have lost his rhythm. Once a consistent wicket taker in the limited overs format, Chahal has been struggling for a while and has been benched more often in the recent past.

There is no doubt that the selection committee faces a challenge in terms of giving preference to who between the spin duo and other tweakers – Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar – are also major contenders for a place in the World Cup squad. But Joshi, who was part of the Indian selection panel between 2020 and 2022 and has closely followed the careers of both Kuldeep and Chahal, chose the left-armed Chinese as his choice.

Joshi was recently asked in an interview on ESPNcricinfo if he would pick Kuldeep in India’s World Cup squad. In response to the question, the former Indian tweaker said: “Absolutely, we are talking about seven to eight months from now. Kuldeep is in a room where he is absolutely fine. He needs to be more consistent. He needs to look at the tactical part. He needs to know how he will approach each team and location. The World Cup is in India, but each location has a different dimension in terms of field, soil and climate. He has to prepare for that.”

Joshi was then asked if he would go with Yuzvendra in the 15-man Indian squad. The ex-Indian cricketer immediately denied having Jadeja in the mix and other spinners like Axar, Washington and Ravi Bishnoi. Joshi felt that young Bishnoi has faster arm action than Yuzi and is also a better fielder.

“No. Given the options I have at the moment, Jadeja will be on my team. If he’s not in a good rhythm, you have a backup in Axar. Then I’d probably look at Washy [Washington Sundar] or Ravi Bishnoi if I need another legs spinner, because Bishnoi is more consistent and has quicker arm action, and he’s a better fielder than Chahal.” Joshi explained.

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