With the onset of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s Future Tours Program has gone for a toss.
When cricket finally resumes, there might be a possibility of the cricket board’s fielding two different international teams for separate formats.
Although this hasn’t occurred ever before in the history of Indian cricket, the BCCI might look at all available options on the table, given its priority for bilateral ties.
Also, given the vast pool of reserves, the top three teams in the world have at their disposal, the option seems feasible.
Former Chairman of Selectors, MSK Prasad, during a recent interaction, picked two separate Indian teams for both Test and T20I format, comprising of 12 players, which the board feel can field on the same day.
For the Test team, MSK made no wholesale changes as far as the premier lineups for the longest format of the game is concerned.
In the absence of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, MSK picked KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan to bolster the top order in the T20I lineup.
The likes of Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya form the core of India’s batting in the middle in coloured clothing.
With Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami included in the Test line-up, Bhuvneshwar Kumar along with upcoming talents Deepak Chahar and Navdeep Saini share the new ball attack in T20Is.
Wriddhiman Saha dons the gloves in red-ball cricket, while Rahul can be given the wicketkeeping duties in white-ball cricket.
Let us look at the Indian lineups –
For Test XII:
Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami
For T20I XII:
KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Deepak Chahar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini.