India and Bangladesh face off in the final Test of the two-match series at Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka. India lead the series 1-0 going into the second game that kicks off on Thursday. The guests had defeated the Bangla Tigers by 188 runs in the first Test. KL Rahul, India’s stand-in captain for the Test series in Bangladesh, suffered an injury on his hand while batting in the nets on the eve of the second Test match. It is worth noting that regular India skipper Rohit Sharma, who had missed the first game due to a thumb injury, has been ruled out of the second Test as well. Meanwhile, right-arm pacer Navdeep Saini, who warmed the bench in the first game, has also been ruled out due to abdominal muscle strain.
Here is what we think could be India’s playing XI for the second Test vs Bangladesh:
Shubman Gill: The right-handed batter lost his wicket while trying to play a scoop shot in the first innings of the first Test vs Bangladesh, but he scored a superb century in the second innings.
KL Rahul (c): On the captaincy front, KL Rahul performed well, but as a batter, he failed to impress with the scores of 22 and 23 across his two innings in the first Test. He must be expecting a better show from himself if he is fit for the second game. Though he suffered the injury, batting coach Vikram Rathour said that he is expected to recover in time for the match.
Cheteshwar Pujara: The number 3 batter was in sensational touch in the first Test in Chattogram. He scored 90 runs in the first innings, before scoring 102 not out in the second. The second knock also saw him scoring his fastest Test century. It came off 130 balls.
Virat Kohli: In the first innings, Virat Kohli fell at the score of 1 after a turning delivery from Taijul Islam trapped him in front of the stumps, while in the second innings, he remained unbeaten on 19 when India declared their innings. He must be eyeing a 73rd international ton and 28th in Test going into the final game.
Shreyas Iyer: The right-handed batter fell 14 runs short of his century on the bowling of Ebadot Hossain in the first innings of the first Test vs Bangladesh. In the second innings, he did not get a chance to bat.
Rishabh Pant (wk): The southpaw played a key role in providing India momentum after the side lost three early wickets in the first innings of the first Test. He had scored a 46 off 45 balls, dominating the Bangladesh bowlers.
Axar Patel: The all-rounder failed to live-up to the expectations with the bat and the ball in the first-half of the match, but the final innings saw him registering a four-wicket haul.
Ravichandran Ashwin: The off-spinner scored a half-century in the first innings, but looked ineffective with the ball in hand. During one of the Bangladesh innings, he remained wicketless, while the other one saw him picking only one wicket.
Kuldeep Yadav: The chinaman bowler had a memorable return to Test cricket. He starred for India with a five-wicket haul in the first innings of Bangladesh. In the second innings, he picked three wickets to end the match with figures of 8 for 113.
Umesh Yadav: The right-arm pacer picked two wickets in the first Test with one each across the two innings of Bangladesh. He cannot be blamed much as the surface had barely offered any help to the fast bowlers.
Mohammed Siraj: The right-arm pacer is an asset for the Indian team as he provides crucial breakthroughs. Despite the surface helping only spinners, Siraj picked four wickets in the game.
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