Harbhajan Singh backs Shreyas Iyer to replace Ajinkya Rahane in India’s Test team

Rahane has been jostling for form over the last 12 months.

Shreyas Iyer
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Shreyas Iyer. (Photo Source: BCCI)

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Veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh reckoned that Shreyas Iyer is technically equipped to replace Ajinkya Rahane in India’s Test team. Iyer made his Test debut in the opening Test against New Zealand at Green Park in Kanpur and got the Player of the Match award. The right-hander scored a century in the first innings followed by a well-made fifty in the second.

Rahane, on the other hand, has been jostling for form over the last 12 months. Ever since he scored a ton against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the veteran has strained to find his feet. In the ongoing series versus the Black Caps, Rahane hasn’t scored a whole lot of runs either. Harbhajan has therefore backed Iyer to replace Rahane in the national Test team.

Iyer has made his case as a middle-order option, says Harbhajan Singh

“Shreyas Iyer batted brilliantly in the last game and showed his talent. And I am so happy that he made the most of the opportunity in the middle order. Meanwhile, Ajinkya Rahane is not scoring runs. Going forward, Iyer could be India’s perfect solution,” Harbhajan was quoted as saying on his YouTube channel.

Harbhajan also stated that Rahane may not be an automatic pick for India’s upcoming tour of South Africa keeping in mind his form. He also mentioned that the selectors may find it hard to ignore Iyer for the Test series against the Proteas.

“Don’t know if Rahane will be a part of the India squad for the South Africa series but Iyer, I feel, has made his case as a middle-order option. It will be interesting when the selection happens,” he added.

India’s South Africa tour was scheduled to get underway on December 17. However, the Board of Control for Cricket in India has postponed the tour by nine days. After the emergence of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus, the series will now start on December 26.

India will play three ODIs and three T20Is on the tour. However, the four T20Is will be rescheduled for a later date in 2022. The BCCI is yet to name the squads in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.