Cricket

WI vs IND: Rohit Sharma reveals India’s team combination ahead of the first Test

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Rohit Sharma reveals India's team combination for the first Test against West Indies

Ahead of the highly anticipated first Test against the West Indies, India captain Rohit Sharma has shed light on the team’s combination. In a pre-match press conference held in Dominica, Rohit disclosed important lineup adjustments and strategic decisions that aim to strengthen India’s performance in the upcoming match.

One notable change in the batting order involves Yashasvi Jaiswal‘s inclusion as the opening batter. This move will see Shubman Gill shifting down to the number three position, which had remained vacant after Cheteshwar Pujara‘s exclusion from the team.

Rohit emphasized that the decision to move Gill to the middle order came as a result of the young batter’s own request to head coach Rahul Dravid. Gill expressed his desire to play at number three, citing his prior experience and belief that he can contribute more effectively to the team’s success in that position. Sharma further elaborated on the advantages of this rearrangement, highlighting the benefits of having a left-right opening combination.

“For the batting positions, Gill will play at No. 3. He himself has said that, he had a chat with Rahul Dravid and said that he’s played his entire career at 3 and 4, and that he can perform better for the team at No. 3. And for us also it becomes better because we have a left-right opening combination. So that is what we’ll try to do and hopefully this will go for a long term. We have wanted a left-hander for a long time and we’ve got one now and let’s hope he performs well for the team and can really make his spot his own,” said Rohit.

Moreover, the choice of the playing XI was influenced by the nature of the pitch at the venue, which has historically favored spinners. As a result, Ravichandran Ashwin, who missed out on the World Test Championship (WTC) final, is set to make a comeback. Rohit mentioned that the team anticipates playing with two spinners and three seamers, a decision based on their observations during practice sessions and the previous Test played at the same venue in 2017.

“Looking at the wicket, it looks like we’ll play with two spinners and three seamers. Because what we’ve seen here, 2017 was the last Test played here and lot of wickets taken by the spinners. Having practiced here as well and with the bounce, we feel that we have to go with the 3-2 combination,” added Rohit.

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