Indian cricketing legend VVS Laxman has stated that he wants the inclusion of Krunal Pandya in Team India's ODI squad. The 44-year-old former batsman, in his column for the Times of India, said that Krunal is capable of thinking on his feet and he would like to see him feature in the 50-over cricket team at the number six position.
"The older Pandya is street-smart and canny, capable of thinking on his feet. I would love to see him get more opportunities in 50-over cricket too because I believe he can slot in at the No. 6 position and can offer a full complement of 10 overs," Laxman wrote in his column for TOI.
He mentioned that the man of the match awards received by Navdeep Saini, Krunal Pandya and Deepak Chahar show how well players are prepared in India.
"The man of the match awards (in the three T20s against the West Indies) went to Navdeep Saini, Krunal Pandya and Deepak Chahar, which is testament to the Indian system that prepares players for the rigours and challenges of the international arena. Most hearteningly, these players believed in themselves and played to their strengths. Saini is an express pace bowler, and that's exactly how he bowled," the 44-year-old explained.
The former right-handed batsman who has 17 Test centuries to his name further added that the rise of young players will also help to relieve the pressure off the senior pacers of the Indian team like Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The West Indies series has also proved that India have a proper backup for their first-team players, according to Laxman.
"It's not fair or wise to rely only on Jasprit Bumrah or Bhuvneshwar Kumar to do the job all the time. What this series has proved is that India have other weapons in their arsenal. But these players need to play more games so that they grow into their roles, become comfortable and therefore attain the consistency that they are capable of," Laxman wrote.
The Men in Blue defeated the West Indies in the T20 international series 3-0. Krunal Pandya was adjudged the man of the match in the second T20 fixture.