The Ajit Agarkar-led BCCI selection committee has decided the Indian team will play bold going ahead into the Asia Cup with young sensation Tilak Varma the surprise pick in the squad while KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer have made expected return to the team.
The big question on every cricket analyst's mind is whether this team can win India the Asia Cup and is this more importantly India's World Cup squad more or less.
Asia Cup Fortunes
It's a fairly balanced squad where there is a great mix of experience and youth, skill and flair, technique and power and this team has it in them to clinch the Asia Cup and put on a great show.
The top order sorts itself out with the return of Rahul and Iyer and gets more interesting with the inclusion of Tilak Varma. Varma has been a revelation in the IPL and had a great debut T20I series against West Indies.
What he brings to the table is the element of the unknown. None of the teams in the Asia Cup have played him before, although they may have heard of him and have access to his videos.
With his Mumbai Indians team-mate Suryakumar Yadav in the middle order scheme of things, India will have a third dimension in their batting dynamics in the middle and late overs of the 50-over format.
Nice Blend of Youth & Experience
So, there is a fine blend of rock solid top-5 in Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya and then the mix of the Suryas and Tilaks.
With the exclusion of Yuzvendra Chahal, there is a constellation of left-arm spinners: the wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav and the finger spinners Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel.
What that also does is add tremendous batting depth to the India squad as Jadeja and Axar can give the team a real lift in the final few overs of the innings.
In Pandya and Shardul Thakur, there are two seam-bowling all-rounders who are more than decent batters and power hitters, who add great value to the team's balance.
The pace bowling set up is settled with the comeback of spearhead Jasprit Bumrah and there is the experienced Mohammad Shami and the man for the future Mohammad Siraj. Prasidh Krishna's inclusion brings in a different dimension with his ability to generate copious amounts of bounce on juicy pitches.
This team definitely will make an impact and hopefully take it from there.
World Cup Dreams
Now that the squad selection is done and dusted, it's crucial that the team management and selectors stick to this team by and large when the World Cup squad is announced, barring a couple of changes.
The Asia Cup performance will give a fair indication of how this team composition is and how this team will gel going into the World Cup. The same set of players playing a fair amount of games in the build up to the World Cup is what is really needed ahead of the marquee event in October-November.
The only concern could be that Rahul still nurses a niggle and is expected to be fully fit after the first two-three matches of the Asia Cup.
In that case, Ishan Kishan, who has been picked as the second-choice wicket-keeper, will come into the picture and he provides the option of being a reserve opener as well.
So, there are multiple options on the table which the team management have to smartly decide upon when the time comes.