Indian camp will bat first in its journey to defend the title. All eyes will be on the ‘Kohli-less’ side and the strategies Rohit Sharma will employ to solve middle order chaos.
Prior to the toss, Rohit handed over the ODI cap to Khaleel Ahmed, the 222nd player to represent India in the limited overs.
Who is Khaleel Ahmed? There’s only little we know but a lot of struggles were on his path before donning the Indian jersey.
Here are a few things about this youngster :
1) Khaleel Khursheed Ahmed was born at Tonk, Rajasthan in 1997. The 20-year-old is known for his varieties in left-arm fast bowling and is capable of providing vital breakthroughs.
2) In his young days, Khaleel practised bowling quick with the tennis ball.
3) His coach Imtiaz, played a crucial role in shaping his career as he convinced Khaleel’s father to let him play the game.
4) He represented India in 2016 ICC Under-19 World cup when the side ended as runners-up after a defeat against Windies side. However, his spells were a treat to watch and the experts predicted his maiden call-up anytime soon.
5) Khaleel’s domestic uprising attracted the franchises and he was bought by Delhi Daredevils in 2016. However, he hadn’t made it to playing XI. He caught public attention after SRH bagged him for a whopping 3.2 crores in 2018 auction.
6) During his stay with Delhi Daredevils, Zaheer Khan once mentioned that Khaleel is a promising talent and can turn out to be an asset in the future. It is to be noted that the void left by Zaheer is still felt as India is unable to find a genuine left arm pacer.
7) After earning his maiden international call, the little man thanked Rahul Dravid for grooming him as a perfect package for white-ball cricket.
So, can Khaleel turn out to be the third seamer for the side in the 2019 World Cup. Can he make a statement in his debut match? Let’s see.