Here’s why KS Bharat has been added in India squad as a back-up wicket-keeper
Bharat is considered to be the best option in Tests after Rishabh Pant and Wriddhiman Saha.
by Ameya Author
Published - Jan 17, 2020 12:43 pm | Updated - Jan 17, 2020 12:43 pm
The Warner-Finch duo annihilated the Indian bowling attack in the first ODI at Wankhede and stitched a record-breaking partnership to steer Australia to get hold of a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. Apart from an indigent bowling force, one aspect concerning Team India was the availability of Rishabh Pant for the second ODI at Rajkot.
The wicketkeeper-batsman suffered a concussion after being struck by a bouncer off Pat Cummins on his helmet while getting dismissed in the opening ODI. KL Rahul is expected to keep the wickets in Pant’s absence. The Men in Blue have now called up KS Bharat as the back-up wicket-keeper just before the crucial game in Rajkot on Friday.
Many fans would point a finger to argue that young stalwarts like Sanju Samson and Ishan Kishan should’ve been given an opportunity to prove their mettle. However, both the youngsters are currently involved in India A’s tour of New Zealand. On the other hand, KS Bharat’s Andhra side has no Ranji matches in the upcoming round which starts on Sunday.
KS Bharat can be an excellent back-up option
With KL Rahul touted to don the wicket-keeper’s gloves in the second ODI at Rajkot, Virat Kohli and Co. needed a good back-up keeper if Rahul gets injured. Bharat is considered to be the best option in Tests after Rishabh Pant and Wriddhiman Saha. This is the second instance where Bharat has been added as a cover in the national team. He was previously called in as a cover for Wriddhiman Saha in the Day/Night Test against Bangladesh.
In a First-class career spanning over 74 games, Bharat has amassed 4143 runs at an average of 37.66. The right-hander has been a vital part of Andhra squad. Although the chances of the 26-year-old getting an opportunity in the playing XI are slim, Bharat can be an excellent back-up option for the Indian side.
Meanwhile, Virat Kohli and his troops will be eager to redeem themselves after facing the annihilation in the first ODI. There are also marginal chances of Kedar Jadhav’s inclusion into the playing XI. The all-rounder’s ability to keep the wickets can also be utilized by the team management along with his batting and bowling skills.