Rohit Sharma has been ruled out of the fifth test against England at Edgbaston after testing positive for COVID-19 for the second time and Jasprit Bumrah has been named the team’s captain, PTI news agency reported on Wednesday.
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For the first time in three and a half decades, a fast bowler will lead India in a Test match. Bumrah will follow in Kapil Dev’s footsteps and for the first time since 1987 India will have a fast bowling captain.
Earlier this year, Bumrah was promoted to vice-captain of the Indian team for the three-game ODI series in South Africa.
With Rohit Sharma likely to miss the one-off friendly against England due to Covid, a spot at the top of India’s friendly batting line-up has been vacated.
India may have to go with backup opener Hanuma Vihari, who has previously, or there could be a chance for Srikar Bharat.
Hanuma Vihari has already opened at the MCG, and despite only scoring 8 and 13, he spent 80 minutes in the first inning and nearly an hour at the kink in the second, helping save the new ball and earning the praise from the then-India captain Virat Kohli.
But judging by form it could be KS Bharat who impressed both in the first leg and with the racquet in the warm-up against Leicestershire. The 28-year-old, who batted 7th in the first innings, went unbeaten with 70 while hitting a lively 43 in the second innings. Bharat opened for India in the absence of Rohit Sharma and was involved with Shubman Gill in a 62-run stand for the opening wicket.
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