After an impressive couple of months in Test cricket, Rishabh Pant is all set to be handed his ODI debut in the first of the five-match ODI series against the West Indies in Guwahati on Sunday (October 21).
Pant has been named in a 12-man shortlist for the series opener announced by the BCCI and is set to play as a specialist batsman with MS Dhoni playing as the wicket-keeper.
The 21-year-old dashing batsman took to twitter to reveal his excitement, "Always ready to give my 100 per cent on a cricket field. Cannot wait to take on the West Indies in the first ODI on Sunday!," he wrote.
Pant's inclusion in the middle-order further means that KL Rahul continues to remain out of favour as a potential candidate to fill the number five position. Pant's aggressive strokeplay and ability to up the scoring ante with his funky shots could well give the impetus India need to plug a spot that has been auditioned for extensively, given that only a handful of matches now remain as they lead up to the 2019 World Cup.
Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav find themselves back in the ODI fold and are likely to make the cut into the eleven, which could mean that Khaleel Ahmed might end up being the twelfth man, with the combination likely to include the two wrist-spinners and an all-rounder in Ravindra Jadeja.
Shortlist: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli(c), Ambati Rayudu, Rishabh Pant, MS Dhoni(wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Khaleel Ahmed