Rishabh Pant to lead as we look at the strongest predicted cricket squad list for Team India for the 2028 LA Olympics tournament.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Monday, October 16th shared the news that would cheer up any cricket fan across the world. After a gap of almost 128 years, Cricket will finally be a part of the greatest sporting event, the Olympics at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 2028.
Cricket, the sport most loved in India was last played in the Olympics in the 1900 Paris Olympic Games, which was won by Great Britain. In a historical moment shared by the IoC at an event in Mumbai, Team India’s legend Virat Kohli’s picture and his Social Media following were used for the official announcement.
With the LA 2028 Olympic Games 5 years away, will Virat Kohli feature in the marquee tournament when he is 39? Well, only time would tell us that. But given the pool of quality players that we have, let’s look at the strongest predicted cricket squad for Team India that can be a part of the LA 2028 Olympics.
LA Olympics 2028 Strongest Best Squad List for Team India:
The LA 2028 Olympic Games will see Cricket being played in T20 format. With the tournament almost 5 years away, a lot of emerging players can come up, and a lot of established players can fade away. In addition, players who are already 30+ may find it difficult to continue playing the format for Team India where they would already be 35+ at the time of the LA 2028 Olympics.
With that pretext in mind, let’s look at the pool of players who are between 18 to 30. Given we have to pick a squad of 15 as per the official ICC tournament rules, we will look to pick at least 5 solid batters, at least 2 all-rounders, at least 2 spin options, at least 2 wicket-keepers, and at least 4 pace options.
Batters: Rinku Singh, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Tilak Varma & Yashasvi Jaiswal
If we talk about the best young batters who are in contention for the LA Olympics Games, we have three confirmed names in mind, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, and Ruturaj Gaikwad. There is no iota of a doubt that Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shubman Gill at least will rule Indian cricket in the coming decade. These two at the age of 20-22 have already made a mark in Indian cricket, and in a few years, will already become the senior players in the team.
In addition, Ruturaj Gaikwad, who is currently 26 can also be a part of the Olympics squad. Ruturaj recently captained India to a historic Asian Games Gold Medal win. He has only started his International journey. With consistent performances, he may also continue to flourish for Team India as he does in IPL.
Other than these two, two names that have tremendous potential, and can represent India for a long time are Tilak Varma and Rinku Singh. Tilak, who is just 20 is already representing India in two formats. If Tilak is able to give his best, he can represent India for a very long time. Meanwhile, Rinku is the finisher India need for the next 7-8 years at the least.
There is one more name that we as fans as well as India would love him to be a part of, and that’s Virat Kohli. Virat, a modern-day legend should walk in the side without any doubt if the Olympics was held in 2023. But with the Olympics being 5 years later, it looks unlikely we see Virat then. He himself might back out to give a chance to younger players. However, if he plays, it would be gold for all of us.
WKs: Ishan Kishan & Rishabh Pant (c)
Coming to wicket-keepers, Rishabh Pant, who hopefully returns to cricket in a few months should be the future Captain of Team India. He is undoubtedly the best wicket-keeper in the country, and should roar back to form once he returns from the injury. Pant has all the qualities to lead India in all three formats similar to what Dhoni has done.
Other than Rishabh Pant, Team India currently have two young wicket-keepers, Ishan Kishan and Dhruv Jurel, who could potentially play for India soon. Of the two, Ishan Kishan, who is representing India in all three formats should be a good option as a backup wicket-keeper for the LA Olympic games.
All-rounders: Hardik Pandya, Nishant Sindhu & Washington Sundar
Coming to All-rounders, Hardik Pandya, who is currently 30, and India’s best All-rounder can still be an asset in this team if he maintains fitness. There is no doubt on his fitness today, but can he maintain at the age of 35? Well, we certainly think he can do it given he only plays the T20 format.
Other than Hardik Pandya, India can look at youngsters Nishant Sindhu and Washington Sundar as the other two all-rounder spots. While Sindhu is a slow-left-arm all-rounder similar to Jadeja, Sundar is a traditional right-arm off-spin all-rounder. Both can complement each other if played together.
Primary Spinner: Ravi Bishnoi
Coming to the primary spinner option, Ravi Bishnoi is a unanimous name that will certainly be a part of India’s squad in the coming decade. In addition, Kuldeep Yadav could also be a superb option. but him being 33 then, will he be a part of the squad? Well, he could be if India plays two spinners in the squad.
Pacers: Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Rajvardhan Hangargekar & Umran Malik
Coming to the pacers, India need their G.O.A.T pacer Jasprit Bumrah to be fit at the age of 33. If Bumrah is fit, he comes into the squad without any doubt. Other than Bumrah, Arshdeep Singh is one pacer India would need to do well in the next 6-7 years. Arshdeep has the potential, and it is just about getting the right attitude and temperament going forward.
Coming to the final two pacers, it’s difficult to choose honestly, but if we look at the potential to represent India in the next 5-6 years, Umran Malik and Rajvardhan Hangargekar are two names that come to my mind. Umran is an express pace, and if handled well can play for India for a good 8-10 years. Whereas Hangargekar is a great asset at the age of 20.
LA Olympics 2028 – Strongest Predicted Squad List for Team India:
Batters & WKs – Ishan Kishan (wk), Rinku Singh, Rishabh Pant (c&wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Tilak Varma & Yashasvi Jaiswal
All-rounders – Hardik Pandya, Nishant Sindhu & Washington Sundar
Pacers – Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Ravi Bishnoi, & Umran Malik
In addition to the selected 15, in the form of backups, we can look at players like Nehal Wadhera, Sai Sudharsan, Si Kishore, Kuldeep Yadav, Dhruv Jurel, Harshit Rana, Umran Malik, Riyan Parag, etc. Again, among the selected 15, we can expect at least 10-12 players to be a confirmed part of it with the rest 3-5 being new players making a mark in the next 5 years.
Thanks for reading! What’s your take on Team India cricket squad for the Olympics 2028? Please email your thoughts to email@example.com
Adesh Kothari is the founder of AK4Tsay1 Cricalytics with over 20 years of experience following Cricket.
Cricket to him is like what Football is to Lionel Messi, Singing is to Lata Mangeshkar, Dancing is to Michael Jackson, and Acting is to Clint Eastwood.
Besides his effervescent love for Cricket, Adesh is an MBA by qualification.