India vs Bangladesh: Two changes Men in Blue should make for the Rajkot T20I
Bangladesh drew first blood in the ongoing T20 series versus India courtesy some disciplined bowling and a crafty knock from the veteran batsman Mushfiqur Rahim. The Indian bowlers, especially Khaleel Ahmed and Krunal Pandya often erred in their lines and lengths and did not make full use of the slow and sticky pitch where the batsmen could not hit through the line.
With one-nil down, India would be looking to make some changes to their XI for the second T20I to be held at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Rajkot on Thursday, 7 November. These changes would bolster the batting and bowling departments and also provide opportunities for few players to stamp their authority and make the spot their own.
Here are two changes that India should make for the 2nd T20I
Sanju Samson in for KL Rahul at no. 3
KL Rahul would probably have wanted to start the series on a better note coming off a successful Vijay Hazare outing, but it was not to be. His recent patterns of dismissals are a cause of worry for the batsman and the team in general.
Against Bangladesh in the 1st T20I, he scored 14 off 16 deliveries and scooped a simple chance to extra cover after failing to gauge the slowness of the pitch.
Instead of Rahul, India could try out Sanju Samson who has been in scintillating form and scored the first-ever double century in Vijay Hazare Trophy recently and smashed Goa bowlers all over the park by scoring 212 not out off just 129 deliveries in Alur.
His score is the highest in List- A career by a wicketkeeper-batsman. He had been knocking hard on the selection door for quite some time now and has been rewarded with a call up to the national side in the T20Is versus Bangladesh.
Shardul Thakur in for Khaleel Ahmed
Khaleel Ahmed was given the nod ahead of Shardul Thakur for the first T20I and his match figures read 4-0-37-1. His economy of 9.25 is a testimony to his wayward lines and lengths in his full quota of four overs.
While he has an edge over others being a left-arm seamer, it will not matter if he continues to spray the ball all over the park. The management will probably pick someone who can give more control with the ball up front and at the death too.
Since there is only Shardul Thakur in the 15 member squad as a like for like replacement of Khaleel, he is bound to get at least one game in the ongoing T20I series. His T20I record is not staggering by any means - 8 wickets in 7 matches at an economy of 8.80. But the management can try for something fresh.
These changes would bolster India's batting and bowling departments and also give more exposure to these young players. It is time that they portray their talent and skills at the highest level.