Rohit to open against South Africa in home series, K.L. Rahul faces the axe
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) yesterday announced the 15-member Test squad replacing youngster Shubman Gill in place of opener K.L. Rahul for three-match home series against South Africa starting on Oct. 2 in Visakhapatnam.
Gill who earned his maiden Test call has 1,443 runs with average of 72.15 in first class games with four hundreds. The Punjab batsman made his ODI debut against New Zealand in January this year.
The first Test of the Gandhi-Mandela Trophy will be played in Visakhapatnam from Oct. 2 before the teams travel to Pune for the second Test from Oct. 10. The final match of the tour will be played in Ranchi from Oct. 19.
Rohit Sharma will also lead the Board President’s XI in the three-day warm-up game that includes Priyank Panchal, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Karun Nair and Siddhesh Lad as well. Umesh Yadav, dropped from the Test squad, will be part of the warm-up clash to be played in Vizianagaram from Sept. 26.
India’s Test Squad: Virat Kohli (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (Vice Captain), Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (Wicket Keeper),Wriddhiman Saha (Wicket Keeper), R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Shubman Gill.
Board President’s XI Squad: Rohit Sharma (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Priyank Panchal, A.R. Easwaran, Karun Nair, Siddhesh Lad, K.S. Bharat (Wicket Keeper), Jalaj Saxena, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja, Avesh Khan, Ishan Porel, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav.