CHENNAI: Jasprit Bumrah is likely to be rested for the upcoming two-Test series against West Indies beginning in Rajkot on October 4. It is understood that the workload of the pacer, who played three Tests in England soon after recovering from a hand injury and went straight to UAE for the Asia Cup, is a concern. The team management believes he needs rest considering India have another Test series coming up in Australia later this year.
They believe Bumrah would be an excess in home conditions with Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav all available to play, having had enough rest after the tour of England. With Bhuvneshwar Kumar also in the mix, the management and the selectors seem to think this would be the perfect time to rest Bumrah, who is expected to be back in the mix for the limited-overs assignments.
There is also concern over Ishant Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin. The two are carrying minor niggles and if sources are to be believed, they should be available for the West Indies series. With four more Tests lined up in Australia in just over a month after the West Indies games, their workload seems to be a worry. Though India have been rotating the pacers, Ishant and Shami played all five Tests in England. With regards to Bhunveshwar, there is a belief that he might not be needed in all four Tests in Australia. If Ishant isn’t completely fit, there are thoughts of resting him for the West Indies series. He is likely to have a fitness test on Sunday, which will determine his participation against the Caribbeans.
It is in the batting department, that one expects some changes. Shikhar Dhawan, who struggled in the England Tests, is likely to face the axe, with the selectors looking to hand Mayank Agarwal a maiden call-up to the Test side. The Karnataka opener, who has been consistent over the last two seasons, has also been a regular in the India A side and in rich vein of form.
The selectors seem to think that this is the perfect time to look beyond Dhawan and Murali Vijay — who Express understands is still in the plans. Though Agarwal is expected to be part of the squad, Mumbai opener Prithvi Shaw is the likeliest one to partner KL Rahul when they stride out to the middle at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium.