Team India will be up against Australia in the much-awaited World Test Championship final at The Oval starting from Wednesday. India have been the most consistent side over the past two WTC cycles and also reached knockout phases of major white-ball tournaments over the last 10 years but an ICC trophy has eluded them. The last major ICC trophy India won was way back in 2013 when it bagged the Champions Trophy in England. A lot of debate regarding the Playing XI has been going on, especially for the position of the wicketkeeper. As Rishabh Pant has been out of action since December, last year and KL Rahul has also been ruled out, the squad consists of Ishan Kishan and KS Bharat as the wicketkeeping options.
Here’s what we think could be India’s playing XI against Australia for the WTC Final:
Rohit Sharma:The Indian skipper had a mediocre run in the IPL for the Mumbai Indians and will look for redemption in the WTC final. Rohit is known for his aggressive batting and had smashed a century against Australia in the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in February this year. He finished the four-match series with a total of 242 runs.
Shubman Gill:The young talented opener needs no introduction as he has been grabbing a lot of attention in the past few months. Coming from a successful IPL stint, Gill will look to continue his fiery form. In his last Test outing, he played a knock of 128 against Australia in March.
Cheteshwar Pujara:The veteran batter will be a must-watch as he is coming after delivering top performances for Sussex in County Cricket this year. Pujara’s brilliant experience will be really beneficial for Team India in the marquee event.
Virat Kohli:Virat Kohli battled through his lean patch and roared back to form in 2022 and hasn’t looked back ever since. He smashed his most-awaited 29th Test century in the fourth Test against Australia in March. He also had a terrific outing in the IPL and is currently in a red-hot form.
Ajinkya Rahane:Former India vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, who was sidelined for the team, battled his way back after a brilliant outing in the IPL for Chennai Super Kings. He scored 326 runs in 14 matches and will look to deliver more for Team India in the WTC final.
KS Bharat:Amid the ongoing debate for the wicketkeeping position, the management might go in with the experience of KS Bharat over Ishan Kishan, who is yet to make his Test debut. Bharat was seen in the BGT series against Australia, where he scored only 101 runs at an average of 20.20.
Ravindra Jadeja:The star all-rounder emerged as the hero of the BGT series against Australia. With his brilliant spin, he scalped a total of 22 wickets, including two five-wicket hauls and one four-wicket haul. His spin and batting performance will be crucial for Team India.
Ravichandran Ashwin:Apart from Jadeja, another Indian spinner who utterly impressed everyone was Ravichandran Ashwin. With 25 scalps to his name, he emerged as the highest wicket-taker of the series.
Shardul Thakur:Though Shardul played his last Test against England in July 2022, Team India might still go with him, in order to strengthen their pace as well as batting attack.
Mohammed Shami:The senior pacer will be one of the pillars of India’s bowling attack. In the BGT 2023, he scalped nine wickets, including a four-wicket haul. He also emerged as the highest wicket-taker in IPL 2023.
Mohammed Siraj:Despite failing to leave a mark in the BGT 2023 with only wicket to his name, Team India will definitely go ahead with Mohammed Siraj as their pace option. The 29-year-old pacer had a brilliant outing for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL 2023 and scalped 19 wickets in 14 matches.
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