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Both Cheteshwar Pujara And Ajinkya Rahane Will be Dropped For Sri Lanka Series: Sunil Gavaskar Picks Replacements For Batting Duo

Batting great Sunil Gavaskar feels that there will be two vacant places in the India XI for the Sri Lanka Tests. Gavaskar made a bold claim that Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara will get dropped for the upcoming series after their underwhelming show with the bat in the past year. The batting duo failed to live up to the expectations in the ongoing Test series against South Africa, which has put their place in the team under jeopardy.

In the second innings of series decider against South Africa, Pujara was dismissed on 9, while Rahane scored just 1. The Indian batting unit apart from Rishabh Pant failed miserably on Thursday and bundled out for just 198.

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Gavaskar feels that there will be a couple of vacant places in India’s XI after the South Africa series as Rahane and Pujara are going to lose their spot.

“I think that not just Ajinkya Rahane (will be out of the team). Shreyas Iyer got an opportunity in the Test series against New Zealand and he scored a well-crafted century. He scored decent runs throughout the series, so I believe there will be two vacant places in the XI,” Gavaskar said on air during Day 3 of the 3rd Test between India and South Africa in Cape Town.

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The two-match Test series between India and Sri Lanka will start from February 25 in Bengaluru. India are expected to make some changes in their XI with the return of Rohit Sharma and the poor form of Pujara-Rahane is expected to make way for young players.

Pujara will finish the South Africa tour with just 124 runs in 6 innings, while Rahane scored 136 matches in 3 matches.

Gavaskar feels that Vihari and Iyer will replace the veteran batting duo at no.3 and 5 spots respectively.

“I think both Pujara and Rahane will be dropped from the team for the Sri Lanka series. Iyer and Vihari will both play. We’ll have to see who plays at no.3. Hanuma Vihari may take Pujara’s place and Shreyas Iyer could be no.5 in place of Rahane, but we will have to see. Nevertheless, I think there will certainly be two spots up for grabs against Sri Lanka,” added Gavaskar.

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