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Pandya captain for SL T20s; Dhawan axed from ODIs

Source: PTI
Last updated on: December 27, 2022 23:30 IST
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IMAGE: Hardik Pandya's elevation as the T20 captain is a significant one as he has also been appointed as Rohit Sharma's deputy for the Sri Lanka ODIs. Photograph: Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images

The transition phase in Indian cricket kick-started on Tuesday with premier all-rounder Hardik Pandya being named captain of the T20 side for the upcoming series against Sri Lanka, starting on January 3.

The 27-year-old all-rounder has also been named as the vice-captain of the ODI squad, indicating BCCI's plans to have him as the long-term skipper in white ball cricket once Rohit Sharma, 35, decides to call time on his international career.


While Rohit, recuperating from a finger injury was named captain of the ODI series which follows the T20Is, it is clear that the shortest format will feature fresh faces and primarily IPL performers.

Even Virat Kohli and KL Rahul are also not part of the T20I format and there is an indication that the duo along with Rohit might not be picked again keeping the 2024 T20 World Cup in mind.

The three senior players will probably be asked to concentrate on the 50-overs format with the ODI World Cup set to be played in India next year.

"Yes, there will be no official announcement that Rohit has been removed from T20I captaincy but he along with Kohli and Rahul will be phased out from the format. Obviously, Rohit's dislocated thumb injury hasn't completely healed although he has started training. But phasing out has indeed started," a senior BCCI source told PTI.

Suryakumar Yadav, who has been sensational with the bat in the last 12 months, is the new vice-captain in T20Is.

Pandya, who led Gujarat Titans to the IPL 2022 title, was touted as Rohit's replacement after India were outclassed by England in the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup.

While Rohit is still recovering from thumb dislocation, the BCCI press release doesn't state if it is a permanent change or just for one series.

The T20I team has a fresh look with two uncapped pacers Shivam Mavi and Mukesh Kumar being inducted into the shortest format.

Ruturaj Gaikwad and Rahul Tripathi, two powerhouse IPL performers, also made it to the T20 side.

The ODI side boasts of a more experienced look with Mohammed Shami coming back from shoulder injury.

Rishabh Pant is not a part of both the white-ball squads and it is understood that he has been asked to report at the NCA for a knee strengthening rehabilitation programme for two weeks. Hence, he will miss the entire Sri Lanka series.

But BCCI's statement doesn't mention whether he has been rested or dropped.  

Shikhar Dhawan, one of India's top players in white ball cricket, has perhaps played his last match for the country after a prolonged bad patch which finds him ousted from the ODI set-up.

Ironically, even one series before Bangladesh, he was leading the side in New Zealand but his dismal drop in scoring rate and also not being able to string a series of consistent scores have gone against him.

Rohit being a white-ball giant and Shubman Gill in prime ODI form with Ishan Kishan hitting fastest double hundred less than a month back, India have multiple options and can look beyond Dhawan.

India's squad for Sri Lanka T20Is: Hardik Pandya (captain), Suryakumar Yadav (vice-captain), Ishan Kishan (w/k), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Sanju Samson, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Harshal Patel, Umran Malik, Shivam Mavi, Mukesh Kumar.

India's squad for Sri Lanka ODIs: Rohit Sharma (captain), Hardik Pandya (vice-captain), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (w/k), Ishan Kishan (w/k), Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umran Malik, Arshdeep Singh.

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