Ishant's T20 World Cup exclusion surprises Whatmore

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Kolkata Knight Riders coach Dav Whatmore is surprised by frontline pacer Ishant Sharma's exclusion from India's Twenty20 World Cup team.

Updated: March 27, 2010 17:31 IST
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Kolkata Knight Riders coach Dav Whatmore is surprised by frontline pacer Ishant Sharma's exclusion from India's Twenty20 World Cup team even though he concedes it was the selectors' prerogative to pick players of their choice.

"Ishant could have been picked. (But) these things are beyond our control. It's selectors' job and they pick the team they think is the best," Whatmore said on the eve of KKR's match against Kings XI Punjab at Mohali on Saturday.

"However, we are not concerned with national Twenty20 selections as we have a big job at hand to do," added Whatmore, stressing his team needs to win tomorrow's match to end their losing streak against the home side which has looked lacklustre in the Indian Premier League III so far.

"In Twenty20 any team is capable of beating anyone. Kings XI Punjab have won just one game and they will come hard at us and we are ready for the challenge," Whatmore said.

Claiming that the outfit had learnt its lessons from the setbacks, Whatmore said, "It's not a nice felling after losing three matches on the trot. We are identifying areas we are lacking and during the past few days we have worked to fix them. We need our batsmen to put more runs on the board."

Australian batsman David Hussey, who joined the team this week, said the entire team was ready to bounce back in the tournament.

"We had a great start in the season. We just need to focus on tomorrow's game. It's a must-win game for us. All the boys are ready and rearing to go," he said.

While the KKR camp is little upset at Ishant's exclusion, Kings XI Punjab captain Kumar Sangakkara today justified leggie Piyush Chawla's selection in the Indian squad for the Twenty20 World Cup in the Caribbeans.

"He deserves it. He is performing well both with the ball and while fielding," Sangakkara said.

Dwelling on his team's poor show in IPL, Sangakkara said the senior batsmen should shoulder more responsibility.

"In the last few matches we had frittered away our chances. We have lost some games from a position when we were going really strong. Senior players have to take the responsibility and we would try to put up a good show tomorrow," said Sangakkara.

He also indicated that Brett Lee and Shaun Marsh would play Saturday's match against KKR.

"Brett Lee is hungry to play and Marsh is also raring to go," he added.

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