Vijay Shankar, K Gowtham included in India A Test squad for series against South Africa A
What's the story?
Vijay Shankar and Krishnappa Gowtham have been included in India A's Test squad for the series against South Africa A, that is set to commence later this week.
The duo replaced Jayant Yadav and Priyank Panchal from the original squad, which was declared about a month ago. The former's father passed away a few days back and Panchal is still in the convalescent phase of his dengue fever.
Gowtham will give Karun Nair a right-arm off-spinning option while Shankar will add to the all-rounder count of the squad.
Shankar, who is Tamil Nadu's List A captain, is already in South Africa, as he was also a part of the ongoing tri-series between India A, South Africa A and Afghanistan A. Gowtham will fly to South Africa soon to join the youth team for the upcoming Test series that is scheduled to begin on August 12.
In case you didn't know...
The India A team is currently playing the final of the tri-series against the youth team of the hosts, South Africa.
Both the teams won three matches before coming into the final. They squared off against each other twice, with each team winning one match.
Gowtham last played for India A earlier this year when the Australia A squad toured India. He played a terrific knock in the same to do justice to his selection in the side. The 28-year-old has a bowling average of 29.72 in First Class cricket to go with a brilliant economy rate of 2.92 runs per over.
Sankar, on the other hand, has been a key member of the Tamil Nadu team for the past three seasons. His batting average stands tall at an impressive 49.25. He has been a regular in the India A squad and has performed well in this tri-series after replacing Krunal Pandya in the playing XI.
Captain Manish Pandey and coach Rahul Dravid will definitely look to seal off the series with a win, especially considering the fact that the squad for India's limited over series against Sri Lanka will be announced soon.
One or two of these players are sure to get picked in the squad and this series will act as a launch-pad for the cricketers that are to make this transition.
This will be a vital opportunity for both the players to create an impact on the longer format of the game. South Africa is a tough country to tour as a cricketer and performing well in these testing conditions will definitely go a long way into making an impression on the national selectors.