Shikhar Dhawan, India
Shikhar Dhawan. (Photo: Twitter)

Team India will play in three home series following the completion of the Asia Cup T20 competition, where they were unsuccessful in reaching the final, before going to Australia to compete in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in 2022.

The last series, an ODI series against South Africa, will consist of three games. Two of the three scheduled series will be contested in the T20I format.

Although it doesn’t make much sense to have an ODI series before the T20 megaevent, it is what it is, and Team India will play if the schedule is revealed. However, reports claim that all players who are headed to the T20 World Cup would miss the 50-over assignment, which begins on October 6 in Lucknow with the final game to be played on 11th October in Delhi. 

India vs South Africa
India vs South Africa (Credits: Twitter)

All T20 World Cup Bound Players Likely To Be Rested, VVS Laxman To Serve As Team India’s Coach

Senior opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan will lead the squad as he did in the West Indies in July in the absence of T20 World Cup-bound players, and NCA chairman VVS Laxman will serve as the team’s coach in place of head coach Rahul Dravid.

The Indian players who are chosen to compete in the T20 World Cup are expected to play in the T20 International series against Australia and South Africa, but Dravid will not be available for the ODI leg. 

Suryakumar Yadav and Virat Kohli for India (Photo- BCCI)
Suryakumar Yadav and Virat Kohli for India (Photo- BCCI)

“Yes, it is not ideal to have an ODI series before the T20 World Cup, but that is how it goes sometimes. Rohit, Virat, and all T20 World Cup-bound players will be rested from the ODI series. They will get a short break before departing for Australia. Shikhar will lead the side,” a senior BCCI official told InsideSport. 

The Indian squad is slated to leave for Australia on October 10, which is six days before their opening exhibition game against Australia. However, if head coach Dravid chooses to have his players participate in an ODI session before the T20 mega-event, everything might change.

Rahul Dravid Wants The Players To Have Better Competitive Practice

According to reports, Dravid wants the players to train in as many competitive situations as they can. As a result, there’s a chance that some players headed to the T20 World Cup will participate in the ODI series.

KL Rahul, Jasprit Bumrah, and Harshal Patel, who have little experience, may be chosen. In that scenario, Hardik Pandya, Virat Kohli, and Rohit Sharma would still be on rest. 

KL Rahul. PC-Getty
KL Rahul. PC-Getty

“Rahul wants the players to have better competitive practice, but we believe it could be detrimental. However, it will be put to discussion during the selection meeting and we will decide in due course.

If Rahul decides to stay with the squad for ODIs, the squad will leave for Australia along with South African players on October 12,” the BCCI official added. 

Also Read: T20 World Cup 2022: Jasprit Bumrah, Harshal Patel Set To Return For T20 World Cup