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IND vs SL 2022-23: BCCI 'phasing out' Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and KL Rahul from T20I?

IND vs SL: India and Sri Lanka will play two white-ball series next month. As the Indian squad has been announced, Hardik Pandya will lead in T20Is. While Rohit Sharma will return to lead in ODIs, Shikhar Dhawan has been dropped.

India vs Sri Lanka, IND vs SL 2022-23: BCCI phasing out Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and KL Rahul from T20I?-ayh
First Published Dec 28, 2022, 9:42 AM IST

The transition phase in Indian cricket kick-started on Tuesday with premier all-rounder Hardik Pandya being named captain of the Twenty20 International (T20I) side for the upcoming series against Sri Lanka starting January 3. The 27-year-old Baroda man has also been named as the ODI squad's vice-captain, indicating the current regime's plans to see him as a long-term white ball leader once 35-year-old Rohit Sharma decides to call time on his illustrious international career. While Rohit, recuperating from a finger injury, was named captain of the ODI series to follow the T20Is, it is understandable that the shortest format will now feature fresh faces and primarily Indian Premier League (IPL) performers.

Even Virat Kohli and KL Rahul are not part of the T20I format, and there is an indication that the duo, along with Rohit, might not be picked again, keeping the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup in mind. The troika will probably be asked to concentrate on the 50-over format with the ICC World Cup set to be played in India next year.


"Yes, there will be no official announcement that Rohit has been removed from T20I captaincy, but he, along with Kohli and Rahul, will be phased out from the format. Rohit's dislocated thumb injury hasn't completely healed, although he has started training. But, phasing out has indeed started," a senior BCCI source privy to the development told PTI on condition of anonymity.

Suryakumar Yadav, for his mindblowing one year, is now the new vice-captain in T20Is. Pandya, who led Gujarat Titans (GT) to IPL triumph during the last edition, was touted as Rohit's replacement after India lost to England in the semi-finals of the T20WC playing archaic cricket. While Rohit is still recovering from thumb dislocation, the BCCI press release doesn't state if it is a permanent change or just for one series.

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The T20I team has a fresh look with two uncapped pacers, Shivam Mavi and Mukesh Kumar, being inducted into the shortest format. Mavi was picked by the Titans for ₹6 crore, while Delhi Capitals (DC) snapped Bengal's Mukesh for ₹5.50 crore. Ruturaj Gaikwad and Rahul Tripathi, two powerhouse IPL performers, made it to the T20I side. The ODI side boasts a more professional look with Mohammed Shami returning from a shoulder injury.

Pant heads for NCA
Rishabh Pant is not a part of the white-ball squads, and it is understood that he has been asked to report to the NCA for a knee-strengthening rehabilitation programme for two weeks. Hence, he will miss the entire Sri Lanka series. But BCCI's statement needs to mention whether he has been rested or dropped.

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End of the road for Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan, one of India's contemporary white ball greats, has perhaps played his last match for the country after a prolonged lousy patch which found him ousted from the national ODI set-up. Ironically, even in one series before Bangladesh, he was leading the side in New Zealand. Still, his dismal drop in scoring rate and inability to string a series of consistent scores have gone against him.

Rohit being a white-ball giant and Shubman Gill in prime ODI form with Ishan Kishan hitting the fastest double hundred less than a month back, India has multiple opening options and can look beyond Dhawan. As reported by PTI on December 11, Dhawan has now been predictably dropped and possibly it is the end of the road for one of India's star performers at the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy and 2015 ICC World Cup, where he was the highest scorer.

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India's squad for Sri Lanka T20Is: Hardik Pandya (c), Ishan Kishan (wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Suryakumar Yadav (vc), Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Sanju Samson (wk), Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Harshal Patel, Umran Malik, Shivam Mavi and Mukesh Kumar.

India's squad for Sri Lanka ODIs: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), Hardik Pandya (vc), Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umran Malik and Arshdeep Singh.

(With inputs from PTI)

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