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Five Indian players to watch for in the Test series

December 13, 2020 10:07 IST
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Five Indian players to watch in the Test series against Australia, which begins in Adelaide on December 17:

MAYANK AGARWAL

Mayank Agarwal has hit two double tons in 11 Tests

IMAGE: Mayank Agarwal has hit two double tons in 11 Tests. Photograph: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

The stylish right-hander made an impressive debut in the 2018 Boxing Day Test at Melbourne, scoring 76 and 42, and has since cemented his place as India's preferred opener.

 

His two double centuries in 11 Tests are testament to his impeccable temperament. He heads into the series having scored 424 runs from 11 IPL games for Kings XI Punjab.

CHETESHWAR PUJARA

Cheteshwar Pujara was the star of India's breakthrough 2-1 series win over Australia in 2018-19, amassing 521 runs from four Tests at an average of 74.42 with three centuries and one fifty.

IMAGE: Cheteshwar Pujara was the star of India's breakthrough 2-1 series win over Australia in 2018-19, amassing 521 runs from four Tests at an average of 74.42 with three centuries and one fifty. Photograph: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Having missed the Indian Premier League after going unsold in the player auction this year, Pujara made light of his lack of game time since March with a 54 against Australia A.

The Test specialist's ability to grind down attacks could prove vital if India are to repeat their series victory Down Under in 2018-19, where the right-hander was Man of the Series with 521 runs.

AJINKYA RAHANE

Ajinkya Rahane scored an unbeaten 117 in the first warm-up match

IMAGE: Ajinkya Rahane scored an unbeaten 117 in the first warm-up match. Photograph: Kamal Kishore/PTI

The right-hander has hit the ground running in Australia with an unbeaten 117 in the warm-up encounter with Australia A to boost his confidence before the four-Test series.

Rahane's leadership skills will also be tested when he takes charge after the first Test with regular captain Virat Kohli set to return home for the birth of his first child.

JASPRIT BUMRAH

Jasprit Bumrah has so far played 68 Tests for India and bagged 68 wickets at an average of 20.33

IMAGE: Jasprit Bumrah has so far played 68 Tests for India and bagged 68 wickets at an average of 20.33. Photograph: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

India's pace spearhead had a torrid time in the opening two one-day internationals against Australia before finding form in the third game with a couple of wickets.

Having been rested for the Twenty20 international series against the hosts, India's top Test bowler will be fresh for the longest format and eager to build on his tally of 21 wickets in four games against Australia at an average of 17. He even proved his skills with the bat, scoring his debut first-class half-ton against Australia A on Day of the 2nd tour match on Friday.

RAVICHANDRAN ASHWIN

Ravichandran Ashwin created a buzz on social media as he bowled with his cap on during day 2 of the first tour match at Drummoyne Oval in Sydney on Monday, December 7

IMAGE: Ravichandran Ashwin created a buzz on social media as he bowled with his cap on during day 2 of the first tour match at Drummoyne Oval in Sydney on Monday, December 7. Photograph: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images

Ashwin created a flutter on social media by bowling with his cap on in a tour game and the veteran off-spinner is likely to be India's frontline spinner against Australia.

The 34-year-old old is known for his bag of tricks, which include a well-disguised knuckle-ball, and is likely to be picked ahead of spin all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who missed the last two T20I with concussion.

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India tour of Australia 2020

India's tour of Australia 2020