With ICC World Test Championship 2023 Final position at stake, the upcoming India vs Australia test series is going to see a tough battle between the participating teams as they gear up to steal their places for the epic final, later in the year. The four-match India vs Australia test series, popularly known as the Border Gavaskar Trophy, is scheduled to begin on February 9 in Nagpur.
Team India rewrote history when last they met Australia in the Border Gavaskar Trophy. Despite being depleted due to multiple injuries, the Indians rose up to the expectations and conquered the fortress Gabba in Brisbane to seal the four-match series 1-2.
Notably, the forthcoming test series against Australia will decide India’s position in the ICC World Test Championship points table. If India manages to conquer Australia on home soil, they will be through to the final of the WTC, however, a loss would result in either Sri Lanka or South Africa making it through to the final.
As of now, team India stands in second position in the WTC rankings with a 58.93 winning percentage. Australia is placed atop with an unassailable win percentage of 75.56. India are followed by Sri Lanka (53.33%) and South Africa (48.72%) in the ranking chart.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has already announced India’s squad for the first two tests which will be held in Nagpur and Delhi respectively. The selection committee has made a few mind-boggling inclusions in the form of Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan to bolster the Indian squad against Australia.
Down below is India’s Predicted PlayingXI for India vs Australia test series. Border Gavaskar Trophy 2023 India Squad and Schedule.
Border Gavaskar Trophy 2023 India Squad
Rohit Sharma [c], KL Rahul (vc), Cheteshwar Pujara, Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, KS Bharat (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Jaydev Unadkat, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav
India’s Predicted PlayingXI for India vs Australia Test
Captain Rohit Sharma will be back into the test side after a long hiatus due to injuries. He missed the test squad against England and Bangladesh due to injuries, however, this time the prodigy batter is fit and raring to play the BGT. He will be partnered with KL Rahul in the opening position, who is also the vice-captain of the side.
Rohit’s test numbers have soared after he was asked to open the innings. In fact, India’s success in England in 2021 was highly pinned on the openers who made a solid opening stand.
The third position will be held by veteran batter Cheteshwar Pujara, who looked in sublime form during India’s recent tour to Bangladesh. The test mainstay scored 90 and 102* in the first test and 24 and 6 in the second test against Bangladesh.
Former skipper Virat Kohli will be in the fourth position. Although Kohli has seen flourishing moments in limited-over cricket, he is yet to redeem himself in the tests. He missed the opportunity to make it big against Bangladesh and could only score 1, 19* and 24 and 1 in the two-game test series.
Shreyas Iyer will be in the fifth position in India’s test playingXI. Iyer made most of the Bangladesh test series and scored big runs to seal a spot for himself on the test side. The batter played 87, 29* and 56-run knocks in the two test games.
The addition of Suryakumar Yadav to the test squad for the Australia test series may bring some exciting surprises. He is very likely to make his test debut, playing in fifth position and doing what Rishabh Pant used to do for India.
In Pant’s absence, KS Bharat will assume the wicketkeeping duties for team India. Young Ishan Kishan is also named in the squad, however, Bharat will fall ahead of Kishan in the preference order.
All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who has been out of the Indian team for a while due to injuries is expected to make his comeback. Jadeja will play a Ranji Trophy game for his home side on 24th January before making his comeback to the Indian test side.
Axar Patel will follow Jadeja in the numbering order. Axar has been a prominent force for India in home conditions since his debut. The spin bowling all-rounder is doing everything right to be in the playing11. Axar will be followed by veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who has been magical with the ball for the test side.
Looking at the pitch, which usually offers great aid to the spinners in India, the Indian management may choose to shuffle between the spinners and pacers. They can either opt for two spinners and three pacers or vice-versa in case of the conditions that would suit pacers more.
The two men-pace bowling lineup will be led by Mohammad Shami with Mohammad Siraj as his partner. Both the fast bowlers have done immensely well for the team in the past and would be keen on doing it further.
Notably, India’s pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah is injured and yet not recovered from his injury. He was earlier named in the limited-over squad, however, later the Indian cricket board withdrew its decision and pulled back Bumrah. The pacer is not named for the first two test matches.
India vs Australi Test Series Schedule
- 1st Test – Feb 9-13 in Nagpur
- 2nd Test – Feb 17-21 in Delhi
- 3rd Test – March 01-05 in Dharamsala
- 4th Test – March 9-13 in Ahmedabad