India head coach Rahul Dravid said on Saturday that Ravindra Jadeja cannot be ruled out of the T20 World Cup slated for October this year in Australia and the star all-rounder is out of ongoing Asia Cup due to knee injury.
Another high-octane India versus Pakistan clash is set for Sunday, as both arch-rivals will be looking to make the best out of their opening Super Four match of Asia Cup 2022. India heads into the Super Four with a clean record. They were on the top of the table with two wins in two matches and four points. Pakistan finished second with one win in two matches and two points.
Answering questions about the possibility of Jadeja missing World Cup due to injury, Rahul Dravid said there is still time for the big cricketing event.
“Jadeja has sustained an injury in his knee and he is out of Asia Cup. There is still time for World Cup. So, we cannot rule him out of it. He is under the care of the medical team. I don’t want to rule him out or make too many comments until we have a much clear picture about it,” Dravid said at the pre-match press conference.
“The whole purpose of trying to build the squad is that they can play in any conditions. The focus is on tomorrow’s match. I am very confident that we have a really good bowling attack as well. Everyone is very keen to try and achieve many things,” he added.
Virat Kohli seems to have returned to form in the tournament as he smashed an unbeaten 59* against Hong Kong, and 35 against Pakistan.
Talking about the star batter, Dravid said Virat Kohli is happy with his performance.
“I can’t tell you what conversation I had withVirat or with any player. He played well in the previous game. Happy that he got a break and hopefully he can kick on from here. Virat is keen on putting on some big performances and I am glad he did well. The way he played in the last match was really good. He came back after one month’s break. I am happy for him too. For us, it is not really about how many runs he makes. For us, even a small contribution is important too when the team is really looking for it to win,” Dravid said.
“It is a big preparation for us for the World Cup. We have tried to develop a bigger pool of players. You got to have backups these days due to Covid and injuries. We are lucky to have one of the best on our side. Any time Ashdeep Singh can step in. We have come here wanting to play the best side. There is not any workload management for this tournament,” he added.
Talking about facing difficulties in choosing the playing XI while having so many good options, he said “it is a pleasant headache” to have. “There should be a backup for every position. There will be someone missing out. I have had a tough conversation with some players who have missed out but they deserved it. There is nothing wrong with their ability.”
“For us, it is only a match like others. If we win then it is very good if we lose then we will play against Sri Lanka. We have a lot of quality players. Pakistan are in good form but we need games like these to improve ourselves. You are able to judge the players and even I can get a lot of answers to the questions I have,” he added.
Praising Pakistan’s young pace sensation Naseem Shah, Dravid said “Naseem Shah has bowled well but even our batters have scored runs against Pakistan. We do not look at what Pakistan have, we want to focus on our strengths and what we have.