IND vs NZ 3rd ODI: The Chahal Conundrum


Aaj Chahal TV pe koi player nahi aayenge, aaj hum aapko survey karwayenge dressing room ka”Like an energetic vlogger, Indian leg spinner Yuzvedra Chahal holds a mic and makes a touring video of the Indian dressing room at Raipur.

On the eve of their third and final ODI against New Zealand at the Holkar Stadium on Monday, Chahal kept bowling to Hardik Pandya and Shubman Gill at the nets. With India already clinching the series, this is a dead- rubber game, and Chahal will be hoping to get a chance on Tuesday (AP)

From being the first-choice leg-spinner in the limited-overs set up, he has been warming the bench of late. And the question on everyone’s lips is why is the team management utilising his services more with the mic than with the ball lately.Chahal flew to the T20 World Cup hoping that bigger grounds in Australia will favour suit his bowling only for the team management not field the leg-spinner in any of the games. Even as other teams preferred wrist-spinners, Chahal warmed the bench the entire tournament. He played in New Zealand, and in the three T20Is and one ODIs against Sri Lanka before making the way for Kuldeep Yadav.With the 50-over World Cup taking precedence and the need to find balance means, India have been forced to take a few calls. And to make up for their batters who don’t bowl, they have opted for spinners who can bat and that means there is only one spot available for Chahal and Kuldeep. And in that context, the former seems to be the one who is being sacrificed for the bigger cause. Since making his comeback, Kuldeep has not only out-bowled Chahal, but is also giving the team a wicket-taking option in the middle-overs. Plus, not all teams have a Chinaman in their ranks and the unfamiliarity that Kuldeep brings is always going to work in his favour once he found the mojo back.And given his recent performances, Kuldeep also seems to have won back the trust of the team management. And to partner Kuldeep and lend more balance to the team India are looking at one of Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel and Washington Sundar as the second spinner – with the latter being the preferred choice in the ODIs against New Zealand in the absence of the other two.


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