Here's why India are without Rahane, Jaddu and Ishant in Mumbai Test! Photograph:( AFP )
IND vs NZ, 2nd Test: While Virat Kohli has returned back to action after the T20 World Cup, the home side are without the likes of vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, Ravindra Jadeja and speedster Ishant Sharma for the series finale.
Virat Kohli-led Team India have locked horns with New Zealand in the second and final Test at the iconic Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. While Kohli has returned back to action after the T20 World Cup, the home side are without the likes of vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, Ravindra Jadeja and speedster Ishant Sharma for the series finale.
After a delayed start due to wet outfield, Captain Kohli won the toss and elected to bat first. He opined on Rahane, Ishant and Jadeja's absence and told the broadcasters, "We're batting first. Looks like a hard wicket and not a lot of grass. With the sun out, it should be the best time to bat. Rahane had a hammie niggle on Day 5, Jadeja has a swollen right forearm, and Ishant has an injury too. We just have to do the basics right like in Kanpur. NZ must be given credit for batting out the overs on Day 5. We can be in positions to capitalize at home if we play well."
With no Rahane, Jadeja and Ishant in the playing XI, India's line-up for the deciding Test is as follows:
India playing XI: Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(c), Shreyas Iyer, Wriddhiman Saha(w), Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj
On the other hand, New Zealand are also without their regular captain Kane Williamson. In his absence, Tom Latham is leading the side in the crunch encounter. At the coin toss, he stated, "We would've had a bat too. It's been under covers for a few days, and so it might do a bit early. Unfortunate for Kane, his elbow is acting up again, but good chance for Mitchell. It might swing with the humidity here, and we will get assistance and given the pitch it will spin too. We did well after losing the toss in Kanpur and hopefully we can make use of the conditions here and pick up some early wickets."
NZ playing XI: Tom Latham(c), Will Young, Daryl Mitchell, Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell(w), Rachin Ravindra, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, William Somerville, Ajaz Patel
The two teams have all to play for after the first Test ended in a riveting draw at Green Park, Kanpur. In the series opener, Rahane continued his poor run of form whereas Ishant returned wicketless. However, Jadeja performed well with a crunch 50 and four-wicket haul in the final innings, hence, his absence will be felt by Team India.