Reports: Ajinkya Rahane to lead India in first Test against New Zealand, Virat Kohli to return for second game

Reports: Ajinkya Rahane to lead India in first Test against New Zealand, Virat Kohli to return for second game

Rohit Sharma to be given a rest for the Test series.

Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane
Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane. (Photo by Adam Davy/PA Images via Getty Images)

As per the latest development, Ajinkya Rahane is set to lead India in the first Test against New Zealand later this month. Big names Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli won’t be participating in that fixture and Rahane will have a point to prove. Notably, the regular Indian vice-captain endured a horrendous run when India toured England for a five-match Test series earlier this year.

In fact, the veteran cricketer has been out of touch since a while. Many fans and experts even reckoned that Rahane should be dropped from the Test side. However, he now seems all set to marshal his troop against the Kiwis at the Greenpark Stadium in Kanpur. Notably, India have been almost invincible in home Tests since a decade. Hence, Rahane needs to make his bat with talk with Kohli and Rohit being out.

Ajinkya Rahane to lead in Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli’s absence

The major report was carried out by the Times of India. It suggested that Kohli, who’s not a part of the T20I squad, would be resting for the first Test. He’ll return for the second game and take over the reins for Rahane. At the same time, Rohit would be skipping both matches to manage his workload. The decision was taken after the selectors met on Thursday (November 11).

Notably, it was earlier reported that Rohit would replace Rahane as India’s vice-captain in Test matches. TOI also claimed that the Hitman was proposed to lead the team in the first Test and take rest when Virat returns. However, the selectors came to the conclusion that the opener would need a longer break. Hence, he won’t feature in both Test matches.

Besides Rohit, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Rishabh Pant, and Shardul Thakur are set to miss the Test series. Hence, it would be interesting to see what combination India would go with. While KL Rahul is set to occupy the opening slot, Shubman Gill and Prithvi Shaw are in contention to partner him. With Pant also given a rest, Wriddhiman Saha, who played his last Test in December last year, will don the gloves. Hence, the Ajinkya Rahane-led side will have a stern task at hands.