2019 Cricket World Cup

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Virat reveals why Dinesh Karthik was picked over Rishabh Pant

Indian squad for the 2019 cricket world cup was announced in April. The selection grabbed criticism as Dinesh Karthik was picked for the squad instead of young Rishabh Pant

NH Web Desk

Indian squad for the 2019 cricket world cup was announced in April. The selection grabbed criticism as Dinesh Karthik was picked for the squad instead of young Rishabh Pant. Later, chief selector of the Indian Cricket team made it clear that the decision was taken keeping Dinesh Karthik’s experience.

According to a report in Reuters, Captain Virat Kohli has emphasised on the same point, stating that Karthik's experience and composure in difficult situations had helped grabbed a place in the squad.

MS Dhoni will be designated first-choice wicketkeeper in the World Cup with MSK Prasad making it clear that the 33-year-old Karthik will only play if Dhoni gets injured.

"In pressure situations, he's shown composure," Virat Kohli told the Times of India about Karthik. "It was something that everybody on board was convinced about.

"He has the experience. If, god forbid, something happens to MS (Dhoni), Karthik can be immensely valuable behind the wickets. As a finisher, he's done well. So, it was the overall exposure to a tournament of this magnitude that was taken into primary consideration."

This is only the second time that Karthik has made it to the the World Cup, the first time being in 2007. Karthik made his one-day international debut in 2004 and has played 91 matches for India in the format, compared with left-handed batsman Pant who has played just five after making his 50-over debut last October.

"We can very well imagine there's more than an opinion in place that some capable guys have missed out," India coach Ravi Shastri added. "Heart goes out to them.

"Picking 15 from an immensely talented pool is never easy. I'd say to these guys: Keep going the way you have. Be prepared, in case there's an unforeseen requirement that pops up."

India’s fight for the third World Cup title begins against South Africa in Southampton on June 5.

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Published: 15 May 2019, 5:00 PM