Days before India was to leave for South Africa, the Men in Blue lost the newly-appointed red ball vice-captain, Rohit Sharma, due to a hamstring injury. The left hamstring injury has made way for India A captain Priyank Panchal in the squad.
The news broke on the 13th of December, wherein it was confirmed that the senior batter got injured during a practice session in the Bandra Kundra Complex. Team India had been practicing there for the last one week.
The official statement by the BCCI did not mention the substitute vice-captain in place of Rohit Sharma. The ODI squad for the South Africa Tour is to be announced soon. The Mumbai batter has recently replaced Virat Kohli as the new captain for the One Day Internationals. His place in the 50-over format is also under doubt, considering the severity of the injury.
Rohit Sharma did not check-in at the Mumbai hotel, wherein the Test team will be undergoing their mandatory quarantine. The team will board the flight to the African country later this week.
Priyank Panchal led the India A team against South Africa in the recently concluded list A series. He scored with an average of 40 in the three-match series. However, the Gujarat opener is a first-class veteran with more than 100 first-class matches, wherein he has scored with an average of 45 and 24 centuries.
Rohit Sharma has been India’s premier batter for the last two years, in the home and away conditions. He fared well in the England series and also got his first overseas test century there. The absence of the opener will hurt team India, as captain Virat Kohli is still in the search of his sublime form.
Mayank Agrawal was India’s most valuable player in the recently concluded New Zealand series. Most likely, Mayank will serve as an opener alongside his fellow Bangalore mate, KL Rahul. Shubman Gill served as the second fiddle to Rohit Sharma. However, an injury has kept him out of the test squad.
The Test series starts on the 26th of December, while the One Day Internationals series is set to take place in January.
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