Sri Lankan batting great Kumar Sangakkara backed former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni to make it to Team India’s World Cup squad for the ICC WC 2019 starting May 15 in the United Kingdom.

Sangakkara also stated that there was no substitute for experience and that was why Dhoni would be an integral part of the Indian team. The veteran Sri Lankan cricketer also feels India skipper Virat Kohli will need Dhoni’s vast experience in England and Wales during the upcoming world tournament.

Dhoni was India’s standout performer in India’s historic ODI series wins in Australia. The Ranchi-based wicket-keeper batsman also played a more than an important role in India’s 4-1 win over New Zealand in five-match ODI series.

Dhoni lifted the World Cup trophy in 2011. Dhoni is also the only skipper in the history of the game to guide his team to all three ICC titles — WT20 (2007), World Cup (2011) Champions Trophy (2013).

“When it comes to a World Cup, experience counts a lot. Not just experience but that is close to its best. I think MS Dhoni will definitely find a place in that World Cup 15 for India,” Sangakkara told India Today.

He further said, “Also I think with his experience, Virat will want to have a very cool head on the field, if push comes to shove when they are in a tight situation in a World Cup.”

Speaking about young wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant, Sangakkara said, “Rishabh Pant has been an outstanding discovery for India. So competition for places whether you are young or old actually drives you to do better. It just depends on how you take it. Whether you look at it as an opportunity or a threat.”