Indian team management will closely monitor Ravindra Jadeja’s progress in the run-up to Boxing Day against Australia this weekend as, if fit, the all-rounder could walk into the playing XI in place of Hanuma Vihari. Jadeja, who suffered a concussion during the first T20 international, also suffered a hamstring injury that prevented him from entering the first test.
However, in recent days as India played the Test match, Jadeja has slowly returned to the nets. The senior all-rounder has been reported to be recovering well, but it cannot be said with certainty that he will be 100 percent fit for the second test in Melbourne starting on December 26.
But when he’s fit, the ax falls on Andhra Pradesh batsman Vihari, not because of his low scores in the Adelaide Test, but purely based on the best combination Ajinkya Rahane and Ravi Shastri can put on the field.
“If Jadeja gets fit to bowl long spells, then there is no debate at all. Jadeja replaces Vihari based on his all-round skills. It also gives us the opportunity to play five bowlers at the MCG,” said a senior BCCI source . told PTI about conditions of anonymity.
Jadeja has 1,869 runs in 49 tests with an average of 35 plus of which there are one hundred and forty fifties. He has struck half a century in both England and Australia on previous trips.
On the other hand, in his 10 tests, Vihari has scored 576 runs with a hundred against the West Indies and four half centuries with an average of 33 plus.
There is a school of opinion that when pure hitting skills are taken into account, there is not much difference between “specialist Vihari” and “all-rounder Jadeja”.
With Mohammed Shami already banned from the series for a wrist fracture, India could be tempted to compete with five specialized bowlers instead of the usual four, who have been their lead for years.
The Indian squad had scheduled a practice session in the Adelaide Oval on Monday, but it had to be canceled due to persistent rain. With skipper Virat Kohli due to leave for India on Tuesday and the squad traveling to Melbourne, the skipper apparently had a chat with his team on the way forward after the 36th aggregate debacle in Adelaide.
Quarantining Rohit Sharma in Sydney:
Senior batsman Rohit Sharma can start training prior to the Sydney Test from January 3. He is currently locked in a harsh quarantine in a two-room apartment in Sydney.
Cricket Australia (CA) has already flown David Warner and Sean Abbott from Sydney to Melbourne due to restrictions imposed by the New South Wales state government in the wake of another wave of COVD-19 cases.
The BCCI is currently unable to move Rohit during quarantine. The other aspect is that CA is still confident that the third test in Sydney will be organized on schedule from 7th January and in that case there is no need to move the senior player to Melbourne as he will not be the second in any case. game. In the event that the situation changes and the third test match is postponed, the BCCI will consult with CA and take the necessary steps.
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