Ajinkya Rahane to lead India in first Test vs New Zealand

Ajinkya Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane was announced as the captain of India for the first Test against New Zealand as Virat Kohli was rested. The All-India Senior Selection Committee named a 15-member squad for the upcoming 2-match Test series against New Zealand. Kohli will be back as captain after returning to the squad from the second Test match. 

As expected, newly appointed T20I captain Rohit Sharma was rested from the entire Test series. So were the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Rishabh Pant.
Surprisingly, there was no place for Hanuma Vihari, who had been a regular feature in the Indian red-ball set-up for the last 3-4 years.

Vihari had played a major role in helping India save the Sydney Test Australia, batting with an injured hamstring. That the right-hander has regained full fitness is certain because he has featured in all the matches for Hyderabad so far in the ongoing Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament. 

White-ball specialist Shreyas Iyer, meanwhile returned to India's Test side and is likely to make his debut in Kanpur.  It will be a toss-up between Mayank Agarwal and Shubman Gill for the opener's spot along with KL Rahul. 

Another notable inclusion was Jayant Yadav. The off-spinning all-rounder made a comeback to the Indian Test side after more than 4years. He last played for India in the home series against Australia in 2017. 



 

Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin are expected to lead the spin department with Axar Patel as another option. Right-arm seamer Prasidh Krishna earned his maiden call-up while Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Siraj completed the pace battery. 

India’s Test squad: Ajinkya Rahane (Captain), KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara (vice-captain), Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), KS Bharat (wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Md. Siraj, Prasidh Krishna

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