New Delhi: After seeing the deadly bowling partnership between speedsters Ashish Nehra and Jasprit Bumrah, India's limited-overs skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, ahead of ICC World T20, has made it clear that it's going to be difficult for Mohammed Shami to find a place in playing XI.
“We still don’t know whether Shami will be fit or not. He still has a bit of time and he was picked because of his potential. He is someone who can bowl with new and old ball with yorkers being his strength. But it will be difficult to replace Bumrah as he has contributed very well with the new ball,” Dhoni was quoted as saying by PTI.
Explaining it further, Dhoni said that “Hardik Pandya is a seaming all-rounder. If Jadeja or him (Hardik) can bat No 8 and they can give me three or four overs, then it looks like a better balanced side. Shami can only come in Ashish’s slot but he would be very tough to replace. The reason being he’s done very well for us, he’s moved the ball around.”
Dhoni feels that Shami will have to prove his fitness first in the two warm-up games.
“But again Shami has a bit of time. He will have to prove his fitness in the warm-up games. If he does, he will stay ahead with the team. If he’s unfit or he’s not able to deliver the way he has to then he will have to make way for somebody else,” he said.
As the ICC World T20 is set to start from Tuesday in India, Dhoni is also hopeful that spinners will have a special role to play.
“More often than not, they have restricted oppositions. Spinners are useful in all formats as it is not easy to play big shots against them. If they get assistance, they can exploit. The quality of spinners also matters. They varied their pace and they will have major role to play in the World Cup,” he said.
(With PTI inputs)