As the latest reports emerge it is learned that KL Rahul and Kuldeep Yadav have been ruled out of the South Africa series that begins on the 9th of June 2022. KL was expected to lead the team in the absence of senior pro-Rohit Sharma but his absence makes a case strong for Rishabh Pant to lead the team. It has been decided to give Rishabh the captain and that Hardik Pandya, the captain of the Gujarat Titans will be his deputy. Here is an in-depth look at the same:
KL Rahul Injured and Ruled out of SA Series:
It is said that KL Rahul complained of pain in his right groin a few days back. The Indian team management took the matters quickly as Rahul is a key member of the Indian Test team that will travel to England later this month. Rahul is going to be the deputy of captain Rohit Sharma in that series. The matter of concern is that KL Rahul has been having this injury for a very long time. This is the 3rd T20I series that Rahul will be missing due to the same reason.
KL Is also a key member of the plans of the Indian team for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia. He needs to have game time at the international level. We have rarely seen a full-strength team playing together. If Rohit Sharma is playing then Virat Kohli is rested. If Kohli is playing then Bumrah is rested, if Bumrah is playing then Rahul is rested, and so on. This was also a factor that affected India’s campaign at the last World Cup in UAE. These senior players must take ample rest and be available for the greatest stage of them all.
Rishabh Pant to lead the Indian Team in Absence of KL Rahul:
On the other hand, Rishabh Pant will be the one leading the Indian cricket team. This comes as a big opportunity for Rishabh. He was made the captain of the Delhi Capitals in 2020 and ever since is having a good time with the bat at the international level. His performances at the international level T20s have been very mediocre but we have seen what Rishabh can do on his day.
The deputy of Rishabh Pant is going to be Hardik Pandya. Hardik is making a return to the national team after playing the last game of the World Cup. In the meanwhile, Hardik led the Gujarat Titans to their first-ever IPL title. Hardik also makes a comeback to the national team after a full-fledged rehabilitation program at the NCA.
When asked about the responsibility, Rishabh said, “It’s great to be the captain of India but the time is not ideal.” This statement speaks volumes of the responsibility that the position holds. And Rishabh Pant is one of the top choices made by the team management.
Kuldeep Yadav ruled out of SA Series:
The other major drawback for India is the absence of Kuldeep Yadav. The cricket community was pretty keen on seeing Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzi Chahal bowl together for long spells but that possibility has now been ruled out. Kuldeep had made a return to the national team after a dream run at the IPL. He grabbed 21 wickets this season. He was not afraid to pitch the ball up and bowl to his strength.
Kuldeep has been rested because he suffered an injury to his wrist while batting at the nets in the Indian camp. The presence of Axar Patel and Ravi Bishnoi will be effective to fill the void of Kuldeep Yadav.
Here is a look at both the squads:
Indian Team for SA 5-match T20I Series 2022 (KL Rahul ruled out):
Rishabh Pant (Captain)(wk), Hardik Pandya (vice-captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan, Deepak Hooda, Shreyas Iyer, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Venkatesh Iyer, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishnoi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Umran Malik.
SA Team for 5-match T20I Series 2022:
Temba Bavuma (captain), Quinton de Kock, Reeza Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Wayne Parnell, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tristan Stubbs, Rassie van der Dussen, Marco Jansen.
To know more go to ICC T20 World Cup 2022: X-Factor Players from Every Team.
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To know more go to the official page of the BCCI.