Former cricketer Wasim Jaffer said that he would prefer using Deepak Hooda in place of Ravindra Jadeja in the clash against Pakistan, saying that Hooda would make the batting stronger.
While answering about his choice between Hooda and Axar Patel for India’s big clash on Sunday against Pakistan, the former cricketer said on ESPNCricinfo that he will choose the 27-year-old Hooda as his flexibility with the bat and ability to bowl a few overs will add more value to the team.
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“I will be tempted, there is no doubt about that. Because it makes the batting even more stronger. Against Pakistan specially, we have not played the brand of cricket we talk about, that aggressive approach, because our batting is till seven. If Hooda comes in, the batting will get a bit longer, so yeah, I will be tempted. He can bowl those two overs and he can bat anywhere,” said Jaffer.
However, Jaffer mentioned that the team management would most likely go with Patel because in Jadeja’s absence, India do not have any left-hander and Pakistan have Shadab Khan and Mohammed Nawaz, for which Patel can be seen instead of Hooda on Sunday.
“I think that is the only question. If India doesn’t play Axar Patel, or even Rishabh Pant, I mean Rishabh Pant is not expected to play as because India have gone with Dinesh Karthik. But the only problem is, there’s no left-hander. Pakistan have Shadab Khan and Mohammed Nawaz. So you will be tempted to play at least one left-hander and use him as a floater when they’re bowling. So saying that, that’s the only question mark. So because of that we might see Axar Patel and not Deepak Hooda,” he said.
Jadeja, who played crucial knock against Pakistan in their Asia Cup opener, was ruled out of the tournament on Friday as he sustained a knee injury and Axar Patel was named as his replacement.
Hooda is already part of the squad for the tournament and it is to be seen whether he gets the spot in playing XI against Pakistan or not. The two arch rivals will face each other tomorrow (September 4) in their first Super 4 stage match.
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