India’s senior all-format players expected to be rested for South Africa T20Is
The selectors are expected to pick the squad for the South Africa series on May 22.
Updated - May 14, 2022 7:51 pm
Team India players are currently playing in the 15th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) which is set to conclude on May 29. There is no respite for the cricketers as the Men in Blue will be soon back in action in the five-match T20I series against South Africa commencing on June 9. However, it is understood now that the selectors are keen to rest senior players like Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Rishabh Pant.
Moreover, it has also been reported that Shikhar Dhawan and Hardik Pandya are being zeroed in for the leadership role for the series against the Proteas. While Dhawan has led India before and was also appointed the skipper for the entire Sri Lanka tour when the second string team travelled to the island nation, Hardik has impressed while leading Gujarat Titans so far.
India’s T20I squad for the South Africa T20Is is likely to be picked on May 22, the last day of the league stage of IPL 2022. BCCI wants the senior players to be fresh for the upcoming England tour in July. “All the senior India players will get at least three and half weeks of complete rest. Rohit, Virat, KL, Rishabh, and Jasprit will all directly go to England for the ‘fifth Test’ following the white-ball series. We need all our key players to remain fresh for the England series,” a senior BCCI source said according to News18.
“The selectors have a couple of choices. Shikhar Dhawan, as he has already captained India in absence of Virat, Rohit, and Rahul during last year’s Sri Lanka series. But Hardik Pandya’s impressive captaincy for Gujarat Titans hasn’t gone unnoticed. So it will be a close call,” the source added.
Mohsin Khan likely to pip Umran Malik
Umran Malik has generated a lot of excitement with his pace but he might lose out on his spot for the South Africa T20I series. Lucknow Super Giants pacer Mohsin Khan, who has impressed with his left-arm seam bowling, might turn out to be the dark horse. However, not much experimenting is expected in the bowling department.
“Our pace bowling department is set and selectors might not experiment too much. But yes, Mohsin has impressed almost everyone with his pace, bounce and swing in this edition. He does have a chance. Having said that, not ruling out Umran or Arshdeep either, but Mohsin might just be slightly ahead,” the source added.