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Seven Indian players to go for county cricket stints before Test series against Windies

The ICC Test Championship starts right after the World Cup in England.

Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

The Indian team, no.1 ranked in ICC Test rankings, will begin their ICC World Test Championship journey with a two-Test series against West Indies after the culmination of the ICC World Cup 2019. The Indian team is scheduled to play three One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and three Twenty20 International (T20I) matches apart from the Tests.

The T20I matches will be played in at the Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill, Florida in the USA and the Test series will be part of the inaugural World Test Championship. Keeping the importance of the series against in mind, the BCCI has identified seven Test specialist batsmen who might be sent to England to play county cricket to prepare for the challenges.

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BCCI wants Tests specialists to prepare well for the ICC World Test Championship

The players that BCCI has zeroed in are Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Prithvi Shaw, Hanuma Vihari, Mayank Agarwal, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Ishant Sharma, who will play County cricket. Amongst these, Pujara already has a three-year deal with Yorkshire and he will play for them again. Meanwhile, Rahane has applied for permission from BCCI to play for Hampshire.

“Pujara’s contract was a deal between him and the county and it’s a long term deal. CoA head Vinod Rai has already given his approval to Rahane but Diana Edulji and Lt General Ravi Thodage are yet to give their approvals,” an unnamed BCCI official was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.

“With India set to play against the Caribbean in about fortnight after the end of the World Cup, the BCCI has prepared a proposal wherein their Test specialists can play some red ball cricket in months of June till mid-July,” the senior official added.

BCCI is in talks with counties like Leicestershire, Essex, Nottinghamshire and the BCCI official further revealed, “During the last Test series in England, the BCCI has had discussions with the CEOs of all major counties so that our top Test players can play there in summers.”

“The conditions are completely different save that they will play with red Dukes which will also be used in the West Indies. It’s just that they will get game time. We are hopeful that all our seven Test players will be playing either Division 1 or 2 of the English county,” the officials signed off.

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