India is set to play five T20 matches with South Africa in June soon after the ongoing season of IPL. In the series starting from 9th June, many senior players are expected to be rested. Star cricketers like Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Jasprit Bumrah, and Rishabh Pant won't be making it to the list of playing 11 in order to make them feel fresh for India's tour to England in July.
Moreover, the Selection Committee is expected to pick two squads, one for the series against South Africa and the other for the test match in England. The last time this kind of situation rose was when India made two teams for matches against England and Sri Lanka, last year.
- Which newcomers are in line to make it to Team India?
Tilak Varma, Umran Malik, Arshdeep Singh, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Prasidh Krishna, and Avesh Khan who have shown terrific performances in the IPL are set to be picked.
- Who is in the race to be the captain?
There are two names in contention for captaincy. Shikhar Dhawan who is currently playing for Punjab Kings can lead Team India. Dhawan was previously made skipper of the squad in India's match against Sri Lanka last year in absence of Virat, Rohit, and Rahul. The other name that is being taken is of Gujarat Titans skipper Hardik Pandya. Pandya's leadership has been praise-worthy so far as his team has already sealed the first spot in IPL's points table.
The captaincy stint can also be extended for the short two-match T20I series against Ireland.
- What does the squad look like?
It is understood that most of the players who recently played in the T20 series against Sri Lanka and the West Indies are set to be retained irrespective of their current IPL form.
The likes of Dinesh Karthik, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer, and Deepak Hooda along with Dhawan and Hardik are set to form the core of the batting unit. Sanju Samson could also be retained and there could be at the max one left-field selection in the squad.
In the pace bowling unit, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Prasidh Krishna, Harshal Patel, and Avesh Khan are all certainties, along with the IPL's stellar spin duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuzvendra Chahal. Kuldeep Yadav is also expected to make the cut.
- What about the injured players?
Suryakumar Yadav or Ravindra Jadeja's injury needs to be factored in and Deepak Chahar will also not be available.
- When will be the announcement of the squad for the series against the Proteas?
The squad for the SA series is likely to be selected on May 22, the last day of the league phase of this edition of IPL in Mumbai.
The T20 rubber against the Proteas will start in the national capital on June 9 with the remaining matches being held at Cuttack, Visakhapatnam, Rajkot and Bengaluru respectively.