Gautam Gambhir likely to play at Indore: Sanjay Bangar

Gautam Gambhir likely to play at Indore: Sanjay Bangar

Gautam Gambhir
Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir takes a break during a training session. (Photo by MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images)

Veteran Indian opener Gautam Gambhir seems all set to return to the Test XI after 2 years when a buoyant Indian team will take the field for the 3rd and final Test against New Zealand at Indore. Team India’s batting coach Sanjay Bangar was confident about Gambhir’s prospects in the starting XI.

Talking to the press a couple of days ahead of the start of the Test Bangar said, “Gautam Gambhir is a quality player. What he has done really well for the time he was out of the team was that he kept on performing for his (IPL) franchise and the state side. And when he got his opportunity in the Duleep Trophy, he was among the top run scorers and that too against the pink ball which certain batsmen found difficult to pick. He has ticked all the boxes,”

The 34-year-old batsman from Delhi was roped in as a replacement for KL Rahul, and was available for selection in the second Test in Kolkata, but Shikhar Dhawan, the regular opener was preferred over him which came as a shock to many of his fans. However, Dhawan also suffered a “minor fracture” on his thumb in the second innings of the Kolkata Test and has been subsequently ruled out for 15 days, all but ensuring a comeback for Gambhir.

“I think the untimely injury to KL Rahul and ShikharDhawan makes it sure there is a place for him. He has a proven record against spin bowling. And the number of Test matches we are going to play in India, he becomes a very important player at the top of the order,” said Bangar.

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The southpaw has been in prolific form in the domestic circuit as well as in the past IPL seasons and led his team to Duleep Trophy triumph in which he got 3 fifty plus scores in 4 innings. Gambhir last featured for India in the last two of the five Tests in the disastrous tour of England in 2014 in which India capitulated 1-3.