Suryakumar Yadav to Captain India in Upcoming T20I Series Against Australia
In a significant shift for Indian cricket, Suryakumar Yadav steps up as the captain for the upcoming five-match T20I series against Australia, commencing on November 23. This appointment comes in the wake of Hardik Pandya’s ankle injury, sidelining him from the series. The vice-captaincy sees a split role, with Ruturaj Gaikwad taking the reins for the initial three matches, followed by Shreyas Iyer for the concluding two.
Post-World Cup Focus: T20 World Cup on the Horizon
The series unfolds merely days after India’s narrow miss in the ODI World Cup final against Australia in Ahmedabad. With the T20 World Cup in the West Indies and the USA looming in six months, India’s focus pivots to the shorter format. Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, and Prasidh Krishna, all part of the ODI World Cup squad, are set to feature throughout this T20I series. Axar Patel makes a welcome return, having missed the World Cup due to a quadriceps strain.
Squad Selection: Notable Exclusions and Inclusions
The squad selection has raised eyebrows, with notable omissions including Sanju Samson and Shahbaz Ahmed, despite their involvement in the Ireland T20Is in August. Additionally, Riyan Parag and Abhishek Sharma, despite their impressive performances in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, have not been included. The squad does see the inclusion of Washington Sundar and Shivam Dube, although Dube’s recent bowling form has been sporadic. Ravi Bishnoi stands out as the sole wristspinner in the squad.
Suryakumar’s Leadership: A New Challenge
This series marks Suryakumar Yadav’s debut as India’s captain, a role he has previously embraced in domestic cricket, leading Mumbai across various formats. His leadership skills were also on display earlier this year in the IPL, where he captained Mumbai Indians against Kolkata Knight Riders.
VVS Laxman, fresh from guiding the India men’s team to a gold medal at the Asian Games, will coach the team for these T20Is. The series begins in Visakhapatnam, followed by matches in Thiruvananthapuram, Guwahati, Raipur, and concluding in Bengaluru.
India’s Squad for the T20I Series
The squad for the series is a blend of experience and emerging talent:
Suryakumar Yadav (capt), Ruturaj Gaikwad (vice-capt), Ishan Kishan (wk), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Shivam Dube, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar, Shreyas Iyer