Team India will be squaring off against Afghanistan in the first T20I of the three-match series on Thursday in Mohali. Skipper Rohit Sharma, who will be playing first T20I match since World Cup 2022, will be leading the side. However, star batter Virat Kohli, who was also returning to the shortest format along with Rohit, pulled out of the first game, due to personal reasons. Apart from this duo, this series will also mark a comeback of wicketkeeper-batter Sanju Samson in T20I cricket.
On the eve of the match, Kohli pulled out of the first game. His absence means that Shubman Gill will be taking the No 3 spot as Yashasvi Jaiswal will open with Rohit.
For the wicketkeeper’s role, the management will be giving a chance to Samson, who impressed everyone with his heroic century against South Africa in the ODI series, last month. His inclusion means that there will no place for Punjab Kings batter Jitesh Sharma.
In terms of bowling, the senior pacer-duo of Mohammed Siraj and Jasprit Bumrah has been rested. Both the players gave a terrific performance in the Tests against the Proteas.
In the absence of Bumrah and Siraj, Arshdeep Singh will be leading India’s pace attack with vital help from Mukesh Kumar and Avesh Khan.
Despite resting Ravindra Jadeja and Yuzvendra Chahal, Team India still got a variety of spin options in the form of Ravi Bishnoi, Axar Patel and Washington Sundar.
India’s Predicted XI: Rohit Sharma (C), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Sanju Samson (wk), Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Axar Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Kuldeep Yadav/Ravi Bishnoi, Mukesh Kumar.
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