New Delhi :
After a historic win against Australia on their home soil, the men-in-yellow are all set for a couple of bilateral series against India. A few months ago, when India toured Australia for a full series comprising of all three formats, India emerged as victorious in two of three series. Only T20 assignment was where India wasn’t successful as both teams settle with a scoreline of 1-1, as one game ended with a no result with rain gods not letting the game to finish.
With this, as Australia arrive in India for two T20 and five-match ODI series, India will look to tick the only unticked box in their favour. The two teams will lock horns for the first time on 24th February at Visakhapatnam for first T20 game.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) selection committee has made some interesting calls for this series, which makes it more interesting. On one hand, the likes of Rishabh Pant, KL Rahul have been called back into the squad and on the other Khaleel Ahmed is dropped.
Further, Virat Kohli is all set to make a return after skipping the entire T20I leg versus New Zealand earlier this month. With the Australia series being India’s last assignment for the all-important World Cup, fringe players like KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant are expected to feature in the playing XI.
In the top-order, India may well go with a left-right combination, giving Rohit Sharma rest in the first encounter. The team will also be looking to give Shikhar Dhawan some more game time as he had a quiet Australia New Zealand series. With this, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul are likely to start off the innings for India, who is expected to feature in all games before the World Cup and fancy his chances ahead of the World Cup selection.
While selectors have included three wicket-keeper batsmen in the squad, it is highly likely that Dinesh Karthik and MS Dhoni will feature ahead of Rishabh Pant. The permutation and combination look more real as Karthik isn’t included in the ODI squad. In these circumstances, the team management will look to try Karthik in the shortest format, and then play Rishabh in the ODIs.
The panel has also rested spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar, and it is expected that Umesh Yadav will replace him. Lastly, Mayank Markande, the Mumbai Indians spinner, is also expected to make his debut.
Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthik, Krunal Pandya, Vijay Shankar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Mayank Markande.