India’s Test squad for the tour of South Africa was announced on Wednesday (December 3) with the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, and Rishabh Pant returning to the side after resting in the series against New Zealand at home.
India’s pace battery look sorted with Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Bumrah, Shami, Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma being there.
Who gets featured in the India XI in three Tests is a matter of concern as there will be a battle for places.
Former India batter Aakash Chopra believes that India must include Siraj in XI, even if it comes at cost of dropping Ishant. Chopra said that Siraj is a sort of a bowler who gives his all on every delivery. His ability to hit the deck hard consistently makes him an instant selection for first Test.
“Let’s talk about Siraj. He brings energy to the attack, he gives 120% on every delivery. He is ready to go through the wall for the captain. In South Africa, you don’t need bowlers who get the movement in the air. You need bowlers who hit the deck and who can get the movement off the surface. Siraj hits the deck hard. He is very intense, and according to me, Siraj is already the third-choice fast bowler. If India plays South Africa tomorrow, I’ll pick Bumrah, Shami, and Mohammed Siraj,” Chopra said on his official YouTube channel.
Chopra added that Ishant is a quality bowler and has done well for so many years but he has had injury issues in recent past.
Squad: Virat Kohli (Capt),Rohit Sharma(vc), KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant(wk), Wriddhiman Saha(wk), R Ashwin, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Md. Siraj. pic.twitter.com/6xSEwn9Rxb
— BCCI (@BCCI) December 8, 2021
“Ishant Sharma is good, there’s no doubt. He has played 100+ Tests; to play so many Tests as a fast bowler is no mean feat. However, there have been injury concerns surrounding him in the recent past,” Chopra said.