India’s new T20I skipper Rohit Sharma might also be named India’s new Test vice captain for the all-important South Africa tour. A report in Times of India claims that Rohit is set to be elevated which means he will have a larger say in leadership group from now on. The move comes in the aftermath of Ajinkya Rahane’s poor form. Meanwhile Rohit was already having his say in the think tank after his elevation to the post of T20I captain. He played a key role in influencing the selectors when the team was picked for the home series against New Zealand, the report claims.
India were set to tour the Rainbow Nation with the first Test starting on December 17, but the report says that BCCI is planning to delay it by nine days; therefore, the series begins with the Boxing Day Test match. The reason: BCCI wants to monitor the Omicron situation in the country.
“The selection meeting will happen in a few days. It is likely that Rohit will be made the vice captain of the Test team. The Indian team is committed to tour South Africa. However, the tour will not go on as per schedule. BCCI has communicated to CSA that it could start the tour with Boxing Day Test,” a top source told the newspaper.
It may be possible that the first Test is dropped altogether and the three-match series gets reduced. There is no confirmation on this as logistics are being worked out. The players who were rested for the New Zealand Tests have also reached Mumbai and will be quarantined. Will they get into a hard quarantine? It is still not known as coach Rahul Dravid wants to have a few training sessions with the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Rishabh Pant, Mohammed Shami and Shardul Thakur before leaving.
“The tour will be curtailed. The travel plans are being worked out. It is unlikely the team will leave on December 8. As of now, it looks like the two Boards will have to compromise and agree to play two Tests instead of the initially planned three. Maybe a T20I could also be reduced,” the official added.