In this week's episode of Dream Team, our panelists pick an ODI team from among the best players in the world currently. Helping make the decisions are Karthik Krishnaswamy, Alan Gardner and Andrew McGlashan, from three different corners of the world. The major talking points were how deep this team should bat, the number of allrounders it needs, and how the bowling line-up shapes up. Check the video above for the full discussion.
Bairstow? Roy? Hope? Warner?
One opening slot is a done deal. The other needs some debating
The opening conundrum
The man with five centuries in the 2019 World Cup was an automatic pick for everyone, but with ODI cricket currently blessed with a wide range of openers, who walks out to open with him? Quinton de Kock's form has been on the up, Shai Hope has consistently churned out runs, David Warner has been a run machine since the end of his ban, and it's hard to look past Jonny Bairstow and Jason Roy's form. Eventually, our writers went with the pair that can cause the most destruction.
Who would you pick between Babar Azam and Kane Williamson at No. 4?
It's a crucial batting position. Who has the better chops for it?
Too many great batsmen, too few batting spots
With every ODI team in the world offering a variety of middle-order batsmen, it came down to who has been the most reliable in the past few years at No. 4. Ross Taylor and Babar Azam have been consistently among the runs, but so has Nicholas Pooran, the swashbuckling West Indies left-hander. Then there's the man on his way to being England's most prolific run-getter of all time - Joe Root, the anchor around whom England's batting sets itself up - apart from the regular contenders, like Virat Kohli and the last World Cup's Player of the Series, Kane Williamson. A good problem to have for the panelists.
Which allrounder slots in at No. 7?
It's a toss-up between Shakib Al Hasan, Hardik Pandya and Glenn Maxwell
Finding the best specialist allrounder
The allrounder is always a tricky pick since that position is often dictated by how the rest of the team stacks up. With secondary spin and pace options already available, it was finally a call on what kind of specialist allrounder balances out the line-up. Ravindra Jadeja, with his accurate left-arm spin coupled with his rocket arm, was one of the frontrunners for No. 8. So was Glenn Maxwell, for his destructive capabilities with the bat at the death. The New Zealand duo of Jimmy Neesham and Colin de Grandhomme made compelling cases too. However, the panelists finally chose two allrounders who add depth to both the team's spin and pace departments.
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