The Indian Test team, under the captaincy of Virat Kohli, will lock horns with South Africa in a 3-match series. The first Test will be played on December 26, and this could well be India’s best chance to script a series victory on South African soil for the very first time.
But on Monday, the Indian side was dealt a big blow as the newly appointed vice-captain of the Test side, Rohit Sharma, injured his hamstring in the nets and hence, has been ruled out of the series. This is a big blow for India because Rohit has been one of their most prolific run-scorers ever since he started opening the batting in Tests.
Ajinkya Rahane, who was India’s vice-captain for a very long time, lost his position after a string of poor scores and hence, the selectors gave this role to Rohit Sharma. However, after this injury, the selectors have not yet named a new deputy to Virat Kohli. As per sources, there will be no vice-captain of the Indian team for this series.
What complicates the matter is that Ajinkya Rahane has hit a rut and his position in the side is not a given. The emergence of Shreyas Iyer could well see Rahane sitting out in the first Test and despite him sitting out of the second Test against New Zealand due to injury, he was included in the squad for the South Africa tour.
However, his place in the team’s playing XI is yet to be confirmed. In such a situation, the BCCI is in a fix and they could well decide to go into the series without a vice-captain.
Several players can take up the responsibility, though. R Ashwin, Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant could be viable candidates to take up vice-captaincy for this series.
Get all the IPL news and Cricket Score here