Tilak Varma: Indian Cricket Team’s Missing No. 4?

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In international cricket, Tilak Varma seizes a wicket with only his second ball bowled. However, his impact goes beyond that. The addition of Tilak Varma to the Indian Cricket Team has injected a breath of fresh vitality.

The young 20-year-old batter from Mumbai Indians has exhibited remarkable prowess with the bat, emerging as a standout talent during the IND vs WI T20I series. Could his exceptional displays secure him a position in the Asia Cup 2023 and World Cup 2023 rosters?

Though there were initial doubts about his selection, Hardik Pandya and Rahul Dravid remained resolute in their decision to provide the young prodigy a chance against the West Indies.

As anticipated, Tilak Varma’s performance over 5 T20Is aligned with expectations. His record of 2 not-outs, 173 runs, and an average nearing 60, along with a formidable strike rate of 141, portrayed Varma as the missing piece in India’s lineup, a fitting addition rather than merely a deserved one.

Will He Be Selected For Cricket World Cup 2023

While his spot in the T20 World Cup 2024 squad seems likely secured, the question remains whether Tilak Varma could also earn a place in the World Cup squad.

Despite his noteworthy achievements, Varma’s ODI debut is yet to materialize as the Asia Cup and World Cup await. However, Varma’s compelling exhibition in the West Indies series is bound to cast doubt upon the selectors’ original decision of not expediting his inclusion into the World Cup squad.

Tilak Varma has managed to build a strong case for himself, substantiated by his achievement of becoming the second-highest run-scorer in a T20I series against West Indies. The conundrum now arises: should Tilak Varma be part of the Asia Cup 2023 and World Cup Squad?

With the conclusion of the India vs West Indies series, the focus shifts to solidifying the middle order for the upcoming Asia Cup and World Cup. The return of KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer from injuries introduces a challenging dilemma in terms of replacements should they regain fitness.

Furthermore, despite Shubman Gill’s fluctuating form in ODIs, his unique qualities give him precedence over Varma in the pecking order.

Varma’s attributes extend beyond his dynamic batting; he also contributes as a proficient fielder and occasional bowler. His left-handed batting style presents India with an advantage in countering left-arm spinners during the Asia Cup and World Cup, especially in the absence of Rishabh Pant.

The paradigm of specialists has evolved in the Indian team; the era of batters doubling as bowlers has faded.

This raises the question of Varma’s role and placement. It is now evident that Varma’s compelling performance has made a compelling case for the selectors, rendering their decision-making a formidable challenge. The query, however, persists: does he merit a spot in the 18-member squad?

Despite potential selection, Tilak Varma is poised to miss the initial two games of the World Cup 2023 due to his involvement in the Asian Games 2023, scheduled from September 23 to October 8 in China. Veteran all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin lends support to Varma’s inclusion, highlighting the necessity of considering him as a backup, particularly given the dearth of left-handers in Team India’s top order.

Tilak Varma’s impact transcends his batting prowess. He swiftly claimed the wicket of Nicholas Pooran on his second ball in international cricket.

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His part-time off-spin broke a crucial partnership for the West Indies in mere two deliveries. Pooran’s attempt at a reverse sweep resulted in an edge off the toe-end of the bat, effortlessly caught by Hardik Pandya.

Historically, renowned batters such as Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, and Yuvraj Singh contributed occasional bowling spells, a facet presently absent in the Men in Blue. However, Tilak Varma could potentially revive this strategy if granted an opportunity in ODIs.

Endorsing both Varma and young talent Yashasvi Jaiswal, India’s bowling coach Paras Mhambrey has acknowledged their bowling abilities.

He envisions their involvement in the bowling department, indicating their capacity to contribute as capable bowlers. The prospect of Varma and Jaiswal delivering an over is on the horizon, a development that Mhambrey anticipates with optimism.

In conclusion, Tilak Varma’s impact extends beyond his batting proficiency. His inclusion has injected fresh energy into the Indian Cricket Team, and his consistent performance raises valid considerations for his inclusion in upcoming tournaments.

His left-handed batting, fielding skills, and potential as a part-time bowler make him a compelling candidate to tackle challenges posed by opponents. As selections for the Asia Cup 2023 and World Cup 2023 loom, the decision-making process for his inclusion becomes increasingly intricate.

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