Though Virat Kohli maintains there is “no confusion” over the playing XI, barring one spot, for the World Cup, Ishant Sharma and Shreyas Iyer believe they are in the mix of things.
Before the World Cup squad is announced, these discards representing Delhi Capitals, have indicated they are not without hope.
Ishant, who last figured in a one-day international in January 2016, against Australia in Sydney, sounded optimistic for a reason.
“Why not?” asked Ishant and continued, “To be honest, I’m always a positive guy and always think something good is going to happen to me. I have opportunities to avail in this IPL. The Indian team is still looking for a fourth seamer. Hopefully, I am that fourth seamer.
Was Ishant in touch with any selector?
“To be honest, I’m not the one to talk to selectors or to get a reason from anyone. I only blame myself for my lack of performances. I think if they (selectors) are not selecting me, there has to be some fault in me. I don’t crib. I always take it on me,” he said.
Shreyas, with tons of runs in domestic cricket, played the last of his six ODIs against South Africa at Centurion in February last year. But given the vulnerability of the current openers and the uncertainty over the No. 4 batting spot, Shreyas has reasons to eye his chance. After all, he can serve as an opener or in the middle-order.
Unlike Ishant, Shreyas sounded candid and confident.
“I’ll back myself at any number, whatever… I am just waiting my chance. That’s it. I am doing well in every tournament. I am enjoying and not thinking about the selection processes. You can get a random call from the selectors that you’ve been selected for World Cup.”
Does he think good IPL performances could count towards selection?
“Definitely. Whatever matches I play in the IPL, if I get a great start, it’s really going to impact the selection (for the World Cup). They (selectors) will be thinking twice about me and that’s what I am really looking forward to.
Asked if any selector communicated anything to him, Shreyas said, “Yes. Recently Gagan Khoda came up to me and said you’ve been playing very well lately. Just see to it that you maintain your consistency. You’ll definitely be getting your chances. Never spoke to me about my selection process or anything. He was just talking to me about the present.”
Earlier, Delhi Capital teammates Prithvi Shaw and Hanuma Vihari, so far impressive during their brief Test careers, underlined their keenness come good in IPL to prove their worthiness in white-ball cricket.