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Should Rohit play 1st Test vs Sri Lanka?

By Rediff Cricket
Last updated on: July 24, 2017 15:05 IST
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Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma. Photograph: BCCI

With a new head coach in charge, Team India will look to continuing its good run in Tests when it takes on Sri Lanka in a three Test series, beginning July 26.

Ravi Shastri, who is back at the helm as coach and bonded well with Captain Virat Kohli, will be keen to repeat India's success in Sri Lanka from two years ago when the Indians won 2-1.

World No 1 India will start as favourites against an inexperienced Sri Lankan side who narrowly avoided defeat against Zimbabwe in a one-off Test last week.

India have been unstoppable in Test cricket in the last two years -- winning seven series in a row against Sri Lanka, South Africa, the West Indies, New Zealand, England, Bangladesh and Australia.

The India team management was delighted with the return of the fit again K L Rahul -- who hit six half-centuries in seven innings in the Test series against Australia -- but the opener is down with fever and is doubftul for the Galle game.

Murali Vijay's absence from the Sri Lankan series because of injury presents Shikhar Dhawan with another opportunity to resurrect his Test career.

If Rahul does not play the first Test, reserve opener Abhinav Mukund will be keen to prove his mettle at the international level.

The middle order picks itself with Kohli alongside run machines Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane.

IMAGE: Captain Virat Kohli with Coach Ravi Shastri. Photograph: Hitesh Harisinghani/

It will be interesting to see if India includes Rohit Sharma at No 6 after he was drafted back into the Test squad in place of Karun Nair.

Rohit was on a good run against New Zealand last year, hitting three 50s in the three Tests before an unfortunate injury during the ODI series against the Kiwis saw him being ruled out of action for the rest of the home Test season.

India could also include all-rounder Hardik Pandya instead of Rohit which will allow them to play five bowlers.

Captain Kohli and Coach Shastri have several options when it comes to the bowling attack.

Umesh Yadav, who bowled his heart out during the home season of 13 Tests, will certainly be the first name among the bowlers.

Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma will all be in the reckoning when it comes to picking the second fast bowler.

Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja are the two straightforward picks when it comes to the spin department, but the visitors may also opt for left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav as the third spinner.

Do you think India should go in with three spinners for the first Test against Sri Lanka?

Should Rohit Sharma be included in the playing eleven?

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