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Shastri’s message to Rayudu, Pant
India

Shastri’s message to Rayudu, Pant

Ravi Shastri, the India head coach, has asked Ambati Rayudu and Rishabh Pant to not "lose heart", after they were left out of India's 15-man squad for the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2019.

Shastri said he would have preferred a 16-man squad – “When you only have 15 to pick, there is bound to be someone or the other who misses out, which is very unfortunate” – but said the players left out should retain hope and stay strong.

“They shouldn't lose heart,” he was quoted as saying by Sport360. “It's a funny game. There could be injuries. So you never know when you could be called up."

Shastri didn't generally dive into choice issues, saying, “If we have an opinion, we let the captain know.” However, he threw light on whom India would pick for the No.4 spot – all of Vijay Shankar, Dinesh Karthik, KL Rahul and MS Dhoni are in dispute. "Total flexibility depending on conditions, opposition,” said Shastri. “I would say the top three, but after that you can be very flexible.”