Team India have announced their playing eleven for the second Test against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). The visitors have made four changes to the playing eleven that lost the series-opener by eight wickets at the Adelaide Oval last week. Two of those four changes are forced ones because of Virat Kohli’s departure and Mohammed Shami’s injury.
India have handed debuts to opener Shubman Gill and pacer Mohammed Siraj. Gill has replaced Prithvi Shaw in the eleven after the latter failed to deliver in Adelaide. Shaw was under pressure to perform in the game but failed to score big and could manage only 0 and 4 in the two innings as India lost the game by eight wickets.
Gill will be looking to make the most of the opportunity as a failure could very much sideline him once incumbent Rohit Sharma is available for selection. On the other hand, a good knock on debut against a formidable attack could convince the team-management to stick with the highly-rated opener. Gill has played three ODIs so far.
Siraj, on the other hand, has replaced Shami in the eleven after the latter was ruled out of the series due to a fractured arm. Shami copped a nasty blow on his forearm while batting in the second innings of the first Test. He was hit by a short delivery from Pat Cummins. While Siraj is yet to play a Test, he has played one ODI and three T20Is so far.
The other two changes are Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja coming in for Wriddhiman Saha and Virat Kohli respectively. Pant has replaced Saha after the latter failed to impress in the previous Test, scoring only 9 and 4 and was also not at his best behind the stumps. On the other hand, Kohli will miss the remainder of the series as he has returned home to attend the birth of his first child. Jadeja had missed the first Test because of a hamstring injury.
Team India’s playing XI:
Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (C), Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj