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South Africa T20 series: Rohit, Kohli, Bumrah rested, Hardik Pandya & Dinesh Karthik make a comeback

Some stalwarts have been rested for the series while some old names have made a comeback.

BCCI has announced the Indian team for the home series for the 5 matches T20I series against South Africa to be played in June this year and there have been some major changes. Some stalwarts have been rested for the series while some old names have made a comeback.

The series will commence in Delhi on the 9th of June and will culminate in Bengaluru on the 19th of June. Other matches of the series will be held in Cuttack, Vizag, and Rajkot.

The duo makes a comeback. Image – Google

The selectors have rested the designated captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah for the series trying to manage their workload. The squad has instead some new faces while some old guns have also made a comeback. The notable comebacks are all-rounder Hardik Pandya and veteran wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik. KL Rahul is named as the captain of 18 men squad.

Hardik Pandya who has been out of the Indian team due to form and fitness, played last for India in the T20I World Cup in November, 2021. During the ongoing season of IPL, he has scored 413 runs with an average of 41.30, making a strong statement for his comeback. He is the highest scorer for his team and also led Gujarat Titans as the first team to qualify for the playoffs in this season’s IPL. At the end of the group stages, Gujarat Titans topped the point table with 20 points (10 wins in 14 games).

On the other hand, Dinesh Karthik, has made a comeback to the Indian team after a gap of 3 years. Karthik has smashed 287 runs with a strike rate of 191. 33 in the current IPL, his strike rate is the best among players who have scored minimum 200 runs.

The new faces in the squad are Umran Malik who had a sensational season this year in IPL. He bowled consistently over 150 kmph for Sunrisers Hyderabad and is the lead wicket-taker for them with 21 wickets to his name. The other newcomer is Arshdeep Singh from Punjab Kings, who has proven to be quite economical in the death overs.

Surprisingly, Rahul Tripathi from Sunrisers Hyderabad didn’t get a chance to make into the 18 men squad despite being the best middle order batsman of the season with 393 runs at strike rate of 161.72.

The selectors also annouced the test squad for the 5th test against England which is to be played in Birmingham. The Indian team returned back after the 4th test of the 5 match series due to Covid concerns. India leads the 5-match series 2-1 going into the last Test. Ajinkya Rahane has not been picked while Cheteshwar Pujara has made a comeback into the test squad after his impressive performances in the county cricket this season for Sussex.

T20I squad for South Africa series – KL Rahul (c), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan (wk), Deepak Hooda, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (vc,wk), Dinesh Karthik (wk), Hardik Pandya, Venkatesh Iyer, Yuzvender Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishnoi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Umran Malik

TEST Squad for England – Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul (vc), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant (wk), KS Bharat (wk), R Jadeja, R Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Mohd Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Prasidh Krishna.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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