‘I’m used to it now, it’s been three World Cups’, says Yuzvendra Chahal on exclusion from India’s squad
New Delhi: Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal opened up on his exclusion from India’s squad for the upcoming 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup, saying that he is now used to the omissions, something which has now happened with him in the last three global events. At the same time, Chahal added that he now wants to move on and focus on playing Tests for India.
Chahal did not find a place in India’s 15-member squad for the 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup, happening on the home soil from October 5 to November 19. A regular in India’s white-ball squads since his debut in 2016, Chahal had played in 2019 Men’s ODI World Cup in England, picking 12 wickets.
“I understand that only fifteen players can be a part, because it’s a World Cup, where you can’t take 17 or 18. I do feel a little bad, but my motto in life is to move on. I’m used to it now… it’s been three World Cups (laughs),” Chahal was quoted as saying by Wisden India.
Since then, Chahal has not managed to make an ICC tournament appearance. While he missed out on the 2021 Men’s T20 World Cup, he was selected in the next edition of the tournament in Australia, where Chahal couldn’t get a game.
His exclusion from 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup was a huge talking point, with many former players like off-spin great Harbhajan Singh saying Chahal should have been taken in the squad. Chahal, meanwhile, flew to England for a short three-game county championship stint with Kent and is now focused on getting a chance to play Tests for India.
“That’s why I came here [at Kent] to play because I want to play cricket somewhere, somehow. I’m getting a chance here with a red ball, and I seriously want to play red ball for India. So it was a good experience for me.”
“I spoke to the coaches too, and they’re happy I’m playing somewhere, because you can practice as much in the nets, but match is match. I’m getting to play at a very good level here – first division, County – learning a lot here,” he added.
With Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin in the Indian ODI side for the World Cup, Chahal opined the competition for spin slots in the team is a motivation for him to do well and force his way back into the side.
“I don’t think too much in that sense (on competing with other spinners in the Indian team)’, because I know if I perform well, I’ll play. Someone or the other will eventually replace you in the future. That time will come someday.”
“I take up the challenge in this way: definitely, they are doing well and I appreciate that. The main goal is that India should win, because this is not an individual game. If I am part of the team or not, they are like my brothers. Obviously, I support India (team). I like the challenge: it tells me I need to work hard so that I come back.”