IND vs NZ: 3 Changes India might make for the second Test against New Zealand
Although India's bowling did reasonably well in Kanpur, their batting was found wanting at several stages.
Updated - Nov 30, 2021 12:00 pm
Call it a bilateral series or call it a revenge series, but when these two power-packed teams meet each other, in any format, a thriller of a series is bound to happen. New Zealand may have taken the mace home in June early this year, but India now had the chance to play the Black Caps in their home conditions, under the new Dravid era.
This time around, even though both sides had some of their biggest stars on the sidelines, they have a lot to play for. While India start as favourites as they always do, they fielded a not-so-experienced side who looked to seal yet another series. The New Zealand team, on the other hand, have looked to assert themselves as the best Test team in the world across conditions.
With one test down the line, let’s look at 3 changes India might make ahead of the 2nd Test vs New Zealand
1. Virat Kohli in place of Ajinkya Rahane
Virat Kohli is an automatic choice for any team when he is available for selection. It could well be a situation where it will be the stand-in captain who will not only hand in the reins of the team but also his spot in the team to the captain. As a captain, Rahane has proved his mettle by leading the team back from the brink down under, however with Shreyas Iyer on a roll with the bat, it could well be Rahane who gets benched to make way for Virat.
With leading scorers such as Rohit Sharma rested for the series and KL Rahul unavailable due to injury, the pressure to perform has been high on the seniors in the current squad. Unfortunately, the stand-in captain has not had a great season post the all-important ton in Melbourne.
His slump in form is pretty evident as he is also unable to spend longer time at the crease to form a strong partnership. He has been averaging at 19.57 this year, and under 25 in the last 15 Tests, making it the worst phase in his career.
This rest could just be what the doctor’s orders, for his form recovery, as Rahane will form a key part of the team that aspires to be the world champions. The stability that Cheteshwar Pujara brings to the batting order and his ability to literally take a knock on his body should ensure that he is still a part of the team in the 2nd match.