India squad for South Africa series: Rohit Sharma elected as new ODI captain; Ajinkya Rahane and Hanuma Vihari selected in Test squad

Gurpreet Singh
|Published December 08, 2021

India squad for South Africa series: Rohit Sharma elected as new ODI captain as BCCI announce Team India’s Test squad for South Africa tour.

The BCCI have announced an 18-member Indian team squad for the upcoming 3-match rescheduled Test series for the tour of South Africa set to commence from December 26.

But before getting into the nitty-gritty of the squad, the biggest news coming from their end is that Rohit Sharma has been elected as Team India’s new ODI captain and would thus replace Virat Kohli as the skipper in White ball Cricket altogether.

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As far as the Test squad is concerned, Kohli will continue to lead the side with Rohit Sharma alleviated to the post of Vice-captain where. Ajinkya Rahane has thus, been scrapped as the team’s Vice-captain after a consistent poor run of form in the longest format for quite some time now.

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India squad for South Africa series: Rohit Sharma elected as Vice-captain; Ajinkya Rahane gets one more chance; Hanuma Vihari recalled

While Ajinkya Rahane has been scrapped from his vice-captaincy post in Tests, he has managed to secure his position in the side as thier middle-order batter.

Meanwhile, the BCCI, who had been severely criticized by fans and experts for dropping Hanuma Vihari in the home series against New Zealand, have finally made amends to include him in the Test squad, after him exhibiting some decent run of form in the ongoing India A’s 3-match Test series against South Africa ‘A’.

It would be interesting to see who among Rahane, Vihari and Shreyas Iyer- who has also been included after an excellent Test debut against New Zealand a few days ago, would fill the middle-order berth.

Ravindra Jadeja, Shubman Gill and Axar Patel miss out due to injuries

In what has come as a serious blow to the Indian contingent, left-handed all rounders Axar Patel and Ravindra Jadeja have been ruled out of the tour due to injuries.

Jadeja missed the second Test against New Zealand in Mumbai due to a swelling in the forearm. But, as per recent reports, he has had a ligament tear, which might take months to heal if he undergoes surgery. Axar, on the other hand, has reportedly suffered a stress fracture.

Shubman Gill will, on the other hand miss the tour due to a shin injury which has resurfaced. He also had received some heavy blows during New Zealand’s first innings against India at  Mumbai, and had come down the order, below Virat Kohli to bat in the second innings as against the opening slot.

KL Rahul would yet again be seen opening alongside Rohit Sharma in Tests, after missing the recently concluded Test series against the Kiwis due to injury.

Wriddhiman Saha has managed to get the selectors’ backing and will join the squad as the second wicketkeeper with Rishabj Pant coming back. KS Bharat, unfortunately will have to wait for some more time.

In the bowling department, India’s mainstay Ravichandran Ashwin will get the assistance of Jayant Yadav who has  made it to the touring squad with the Jadeja- Axar duo missing out. Speedsters Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami and Shardul Thakur return back to the Test squad as well.

India squad for South Africa series

Virat Kohli (Captain), Rohit Sharma (vice-captain), KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), R Ashwin, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj.

Team India would begin their campaign with a three-match Test series beginning with the Boxing Day Test on December 26 at Centurion. The ODI squad would be announced on a later date.

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About the author

Gurpreet Singh

Gurpreet Singh

Gurpreet Singh is a Cricket writer at The Sportsrush. His platonic relationship with sports had always been there since childhood, but Cricket managed to strike a special, intimate nerve of his heart. Although his initial dream of playing the sport at the highest level couldn't come to fruition, Gurpreet did represent the state of Jharkhand at the under-14 level. However, almost like taking a pledge to never let the undying passion for Cricket fade away even a tad, he made sure to continue the love relationship by assigning the field of journalism as an indirect Cupid. He thus, first finished his bachelor's in journalism and then pursued the PG Diploma course in English journalism from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC). Soon after and since 2019, he has been working at The Sportsrush. Apart from sports, he takes keen interest in politics, and in understanding women and gender-related issues.

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