‘Baffling’ – Twitterverse slam BCCI selectors for axing Hanuma Vihari from New Zealand Test series

‘Baffling’ – Twitterverse slam BCCI selectors for axing Hanuma Vihari from New Zealand Test series

Hanuma Vihari last played a Test in Sydney earlier this year.

Hanuma Vihari
Hanuma Vihari. (Photo by Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images)

Some notable inclusions and exclusions have been made as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced India’s squad for the two-match Test series against New Zealand. While prominent names like Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Mohammed Shami, and Jasprit Bumrah have been rested, Jayant Yadav and Prasidh Krishna have been awarded for their stellar show in the domestic circuit.

Hanuma Vihari was another notable absence from the squad. The right-handed batter has been in Test team since the last few years and has done reasonably well. While Vihari could never find a place in India’s first-choice XI, he contributed significantly in the limited opportunities. In fact, he famously saved India from a defeat in his last appearance which was recorded against Australia in Sydney earlier this year.

Vihari was also a part of India’s Test squad for the England tour earlier this year, although he didn’t get any chances. Hence, his exclusion raised several eyebrows, and fans weren’t amused either. Netizens took to social media and demanded clarity and justification over the batter’s axing.  It has to be noted that Rohit Sharma has been rested for the entire Test series. Also, regular skipper Virat Kohli would only feature in the second game.

Hanuma Vihari to travel to South Africa!

Hence, Vihari, who has been a prolific run-getter in India’s domestic circuit, could have played a significant role against the Kiwis. However, the national selectors didn’t consider him for some reason. While it seems like Vihari has been dropped from the side, ESPNCricinfo reported that the Hyderabad batter will be touring to South Africa with India A team for three four-day matches.

Notably, Vihari hasn’t been named in India A’s initial squad which was announced a couple of days ago. It is understood that the right-handed batter has been the last-minute addition to the squad. As the selectors haven’t confirmed the development, it would be interesting to see whether Vihari travels to the rainbow nation or not.

Speaking of Vihari’s international career, the 28-year-old has played 12 Tests so far for India, all away from home. He has amassed 624 runs in 21 innings with his average being just below 32. He also has four half-centuries and a hundred, which came against West Indies, under his belt.

Meanwhile, let’s look at how Twitterati reacted to Hanuma Vihari’s exclusion:-