CHENNAI : With a gruelling tour of Australia coming up, the Indian team has been given an extended festive break. In a departure from practice, the players won’t have any training session on the eve of the third and final T20 against West Indies on Saturday. The team led by Rohit Sharma will arrive in Chennai in groups from Saturday afternoon. The last batch will reach late in the evening.
With India wrapping up the three-match series in Lucknow, the Chennai fixture has become inconsequential and as a result the team management has given the players and support staff a longer break. This is a luxury for players used to the grind of all three formats and Express understands that with the team set to depart for Australia on November 16, the management chose to give more rest to the players.
Though opting for practice on the eve of the match is up to the team, this is going to be one of the very few instances where the entire team will reach the venue a day before the match. Among the ones who are set to arrive late on Saturday evening is opener Shikhar Dhawan. The rest will assemble in the city from noon.
Meanwhile, pacers Umesh Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah and spinner Kuldeep Yadav have been rested for Sunday’s game. In a statement released on Friday morning, the BCCI said, “The decision has been made to allow the trio to be in the best physical condition ahead of India’s tour to Australia.” The three, who are also part of the Test squad for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, have three T20s lined up against Australia starting from November 21.
With Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Khaleel Ahmed being the two available pacers from the original squad, the selectors have included Siddarth Kaul. Though Kuldeep has also been rested, India have enough cushion in the spin department with Yuzvendra Chahal, Krunal Pandya, Shahbaz Nadeem and Washington Sundar.
TNCA expects full house
Chennai: Even though the third T20I between India and West Indies has been reduced to a dead rubber with the hosts having clinched the series 2-0, the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) has received good response. About 75 per cent of tickets were sold by Friday evening. Out of the 23,000 seats at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, C, D lower chairs priced at `1,200 and Anna Pavilion tickets costing `4,800 are sold out. About 80 per cent of tickets in the air-conditioned hospitality boxes in blocks C, D, E (`4800), H (`8000) and G (`12,000) have been bought by the public. “Only pavilion terrace tickets (`12,000 each) have not found many takers,” said TNCA treasurer VP Narasimhan.