In a surprising move, USA selectors have decided not to include former New Zealand international Corey Anderson in the 14-man squad for the upcoming 50-over World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe. The selection panel has chosen to retain the same squad that toured Namibia in March, overlooking the 32-year-old all-rounder. Anderson, who previously held the record for the fastest century in men’s ODI cricket, became eligible to represent the USA earlier this year after relocating from Auckland to Dallas in March 2020.
Joining Anderson on the sidelines are wicketkeeper Smit Patel, who has represented India A and India U19 in the past, and former Eagles all-rounder Shadley Van Schalkwyk, who boasts an impressive 97 first-class caps.
The only addition to the squad is left-arm fast bowler Abhishek Paradkar, who joins as the 15th member. The USA selectors, however, have chosen to maintain consistency by sticking to the same group of players that secured qualification for the World Cup Qualifiers after an average performance in the World Cup League 2 campaign. Paradkar returns to the national team after a 20-month absence, with his last appearance dating back to September 2021.
Monank Patel will continue to lead the team and anchor the batting lineup alongside deputy captain Aaron Jones and Steven Taylor. The talented young opener Sai Teja Mukkamalla, who delivered an unbeaten match-winning century against the UAE, is expected to retain his place at the top of the order.
USA will face challenges in the absence of their spearhead Ali Khan, who will miss the first two matches due to a suspension incurred after his remarkable 7 for 32 performance against Jersey. The pace bowling department will be shouldered by left-arm seamer Saurabh Netravalkar, Kyle Phillip, and Jasdeep Singh. In line with their strategic approach, USA once again opted for a spin-heavy composition, with three specialist spinners in Nisarg Patel, Nosthush Kenjige, and Usman Rafiq.
The USA team is scheduled to depart on June 3 for a preparatory camp in Zimbabwe ahead of their highly anticipated encounter against the West Indies on June 18.
The squad for the World Cup Qualifier includes: Monank Patel (captain), Aaron Jones (vice-captain), Steven Taylor, Gajanand Singh, Sai Teja Mukkamalla, Saurabh Netravalkar, Nisarg Patel, Kyle Phillip, Jasdeep Singh, Nosthush Kenjige, Usman Rafiq, Abhishek Paradkar, Ali Khan, Shayan Jahangir, and Sushant Modani.