Selectors Likely To Mull Over Hardik, Shaw And Prasidh For WTC Final Squad > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - Selectors likely to mull over Hardik, Shaw and Prasidh for WTC final squad

Hardik Pandya, who hasn't been bowling too much in the recent months, is likely to miss out on selection for the WTC final

Hardik Pandya, who hasn't been bowling too much in the recent months, is likely to miss out on selection for the WTC final

The Indian squad for the World Test Championship (WTC) final, against New Zealand, is expected to be selected in the next 48 hours, most likely on Friday (May 7). The selectors are expected to pick a jumbo squad consisting of at least four openers, about four to five middle-order batsmen, eight to nine pacers, four to five spinners and two to three wicketkeepers, Cricbuzz understands.

The exact size of the squad will depend on the BCCI advisory on whether to select for the five-Test series set to be played in England or just for the WTC final. The team management is believed to have asked for a large contingent so that it can have a few intra-squad games before the big ICC match. The final, as reported earlier, will be held in Southampton from June 18 to 23.

The squad, however, is unlikely to have too many surprises. The Chetan Sharma-led committee is expected to retain almost all the members who were part of the four-Test home series against England in February-March with a few exceptions. The only key debate is whether to retain Hardik Pandya. With the Baroda all-rounder not bowling even in the Twenty20 games regularly, the selectors may consider other options.

There could be a discussion on Prithvi Shaw, the hard-hitting Mumbai batsman, who excelled in the IPL. But with four other openers - Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal -- almost certain, the young Mumbai opener may miss out on it. He has a chance, nevertheless.

The pace department could have a surprise pick in Prasidh Krishna. The 25-year-old Karnataka bowler could have competition from Delhi's Navdeep Saini but the team management is believed to be impressed with Prasidh, who did reasonably well in the three ODIs he played against England in March. The other pacers who could be on the flight will be the expected ones -- Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Siraj and Shardul Thakur. Mohammed Shami, who missed out on the England Tests, should return.

Comeback men

Just like Shami, two others who are expected to stage comebacks are Ravindra Jadeja and Hanuma Vihari. The two had not featured in the England series but will find favour with the selectors, the latter mainly because he is currently playing in England and the former is an automatic choice in any India XI.

R Ashwin and Axar Patel - the star performers in the England series - should get the nod for the spinner's role just as Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane and Virat Kohli for the middle-order duties. Washington Sundar is also likely to be retained in the squad. KS Bharat could be in contention for the third wicketkeeper's role but regulars Rishabh Pant and Wriddhiman Saha are certainties.

When the Indian team will travel is still not known. The earlier plan was to take off from Ahmedabad after the IPL final on June 2 by a charter flight. The Indian women's team, which is slated to play one Test, three ODIs and as many T20Is, was to join them. However, there is no immediate news of the women's team being picked.

NZ players stay put in Delhi

Meanwhile, it has been learnt that a few New Zealand players, including captain Kane Williamson, have stayed back in Delhi. They will fly directly to London for the two Tests against England, before they from India in the WTC final.

Cricbuzz understands that the Sunrisers Hyderabad management had offered to drop Williamson home along with its Australian members, who flew by a special aircraft to the Maldives via Colombo. However, the New Zealand captain preferred to stay in Delhi. The New Zealanders are expected to leave for England in the next four days after their board has made the required arrangements.