Ind V/S NZ : Gautam Gambhir & Abhinav Mukund could be in 2nd test
Gambhir could replace injured KL Rahul
Ind V/S NZ : Gautam Gambhir & Abhinav Mukund could be in 2nd test:- Veteran left-handed opener Gautam Gambhir from Delhi has received the nod ahead of Abhinav Mukund from Tamil Nadu to further replace the injured right-handed KL Rahul for the remaining two Tests to be held between India and New Zealand, the second of which will be played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata starting from September 30.
Rahul, who has shown a prolific form in all the formats and scored 32 and 38 at a healthy strike rate in Kanpur, has suffered a hamstring injury in the first Test and has been ruled out of the Kolkata game.
As regards Sharma, BCCI has said: “Medium pacer Ishant Sharma is also recovering and would not be available for the second Test of the series to be played in Kolkata. The BCCI medical Team will continue to monitor his progress. Off-spinner Jayant Yadav will replace Ishant for the second Test.”
An off-spinner who is replacing a pacer, especially when the team has been packed with three frontline spinners in Ravichandran Ashwin, Amit Mishra and Ravindra Jadeja defies logic.
Gambhir & Mukund to be selected based on their fitness reports
Either Gambhir or Mukund, based on the players’ fitness test reports, were to further join the Indian team in Kolkata. Gautam Gambhir was at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru to undergo some fitness tests and has already left the city on Tuesday morning.
It may raise many an eyebrow that the selectors were looking at Gambhir and Mukund as an option early in the season that still has 12 Tests to be played as both the left-handers last played for India quite a while ago.
While Gambhir played the last of his 56 Tests in the fifth and final Test which was in England in August 2014 and has since that time he has been overlooked for 17 subsequent Tests till date, the 26-year-old Tamil Nadu opener played the last of his five Tests in England on the 2011 tour.
Moreover, another interesting point to be looked out for in the upcoming days is whether Test captain Virat Kohli will further straightaway draft his Delhi senior mate Gambhir, with whom he has openly had fights, or just give Dhawan another chance.