The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the squad for the final of the World Test Championship (WTC) as well as the tour of England that follows. The all-important summit clash will take place from June 18 to 22 at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton and will see India lock horns with New Zealand. There were no real surprises in the 20 man squad barring one.
Just like the Australian tour, India will also carry four standby players with the squad. The standby players included the likes of Avesh Khan, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, and a young left-arm pacer Arzan Nagwaswalla. Nagwaswalla is the first Parsi cricketer in national reckoning in a very very long time.
Nagwaswalla is a left-arm medium-fast bowler who is known for his ability to swing the red ball in first-class cricket. He made his first-class debut representing Gujarat against Baroda in a Ranji Trophy match in Vadodara in 2018. Arzan shot to fame as he returned with figures of 5-78 in 23.3 overs against Mumbai in their own bastion at the Wankhede Stadium in his only his second Ranji Trophy game.
A look at Arzan Nagwaswalla‘s domestic numbers
The budding left-arm quick bagged 41 wickets in 8 matches in his second Ranji season and was the leading wicket-taker for Gujarat in the 2019-20 season. Nagwaswalla boasted a bowling average of 18.36 and strike rate of 39.4 and bagged three fifers in an innings and one ten-wicket haul in the 2019-20 season of the Ranji Trophy.
He has already picked 62 wickets in 16 first-class matches at an average of 22.53 and strike rate of 44.6 including four four wickets in an innings and as many fifers. Nagwaswalla has bagged 39 wickets in 20 List A matches at an average of 21.76 and strike rate of 24.9 and 21 wickets in 15 T20 matches at an average of 16.38 and strike rate of 14.
He was the second-highest wicket-taker of the 2021 Vijay Hazare Trophy as he claimed 19 wickets in 7 matches at a strike rate of 19.3 and economy rate of 4.32. He had a fabulous 2021 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy too where he was the highest wicket-taker for Gujarat with 9 wickets in 5 matches with a very impressive strike rate of 10.3.
Nagwaswalla has a knack for taking wickets and his numbers become even more important given the fact that he usually is the first change bowler and very seldom takes the new ball. The BCCI’s outlook of roping in such a prolific left arm quick is to add variety to in the nets. Given the fact that New Zealand boasts some quality left arm quicks in Neil Wagner and Trent Boult, Nagwaswalla’s role in India’s preparation for the WTC final becomes even more important.