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This article was first published 1 year ago  » Cricket » Indore Test: Should Gill Replace Rahul?

Indore Test: Should Gill Replace Rahul?

February 27, 2023 09:47 IST
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IMAGE: Shubman Gill celebrates his maiden Test century against Bangladesh in Chattogram in December. Photograph: BCCI/Twitter

Having already taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the four Test series, India won't letting their foot off the peddle as they aim to administer a third consecutive defeat on Australia in the third Test, which begins in Indore from Wednesday, March 1, 2023.

India's spin trio of Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel, who have wreaked havoc with both bat and ball, will look forward to another spin-friendly pitch at the Holkar stadium.

Australia had their moments in the second Test in Delhi, but India staged a superb comeback courtesy of their spinners as the visitors collapsed tamely in their second innings.

Despite the two big wins, one player continues to be a big worry for India.

K L Rahul's form is a major talking point for the hosts with the clamour for replacing the struggling opener with Shubman Gill getting louder every day.

Rahul has managed 38 runs in three innings and has been stripped of the vice-captaincy for the last two Tests. He could lose his place in the team for the third Test with an in-form Gill waiting in the wings after his stupendous run in white ball cricket in recent months.

Captain Rohit Sharma and Coach Rahul Dravid showed faith in Rahul in the first two Tests, but they will find it hard to justify his inclusion in the Indore Test.

Rahul, who averages 33 in 81 innings, hasn't registered a fifty or gone past the 30-run mark in his last 10 innings, which includes four innings in Bangladesh and three in India. He looks low on confidence and is not sure how to approach his batting against the new ball, whether to bat safely or look for runs.

On the other hand, Gill has smashed a double century and two hundreds in ODIs along with one in T20Is in his last 10 innings in international cricket.

The youngster, who averages 32 in 13 Tests, hasn't enjoyed the backing of a long run in Test cricket. However, he gave glimpses of his potential with a tally of 259 runs in his first Test series, against Australia in 2020-2021, including a match-winning 91 when India were chasing a huge 328 for victory in the final Test at the Gabba in Brisbane.

Gill recently struck his maiden Test hundred, during the first against Bangladesh in Chattogram in December.

Barring Rahul, India face no other selection questions as they are expected to persist with the same bunch in search of a series-clinching win in Indore.

If India wins the Indore Test, they could give Kuldeep Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat, Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav a chance in the final Test in Ahmedabad.

My Probable XI: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Srikar Bharat, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj.

Who do you think should be part of India's playing XI in the third Test against Australia?

Please select your team from the list and do post your playing XI in the message board below.




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