Loud & clear

After a lean patch in West indies with the bat, K L Rahul has been shown the door. And the chairman of selectors MSK Prasad said Rohit Sharma will open the batting. Finally the moment has arrived for Rohit Sharma. He was untill now in and out of the Test cricket. There is Shubman Gill who has been drafted as stand-by opener. Remember he has done well both as an opener and a middle-order batsman.There is no dearth of openers in the country. We have created a good pool of players. There is Priyank Panchal and Abhmanyu Easwaran who are doing really well in domestic circuit.

Rahul has paid for his poor show in the longest format. He scored 664 runs in his last 30 Test innings and his only notable score was 149 against England at the Oval last year, coming in a dead fifth rubber. Jasprit Bumrah is all set to feature in his first Test series at home and he will be eager to put on similar performances on Indian wickets like he has done on foreign tracks recently. Bumrah has so far played in South Africa, England, Australia and West Indies and has been one of the top-performing bowlers for India.

Kohli and his boys will play against mighty South Africans. With spin-friendly wickets, Ashwin, Jadeja and Kuldeep will have a lot to do. In all probability, the hosts will go with three spinners and two pacers. All eyes would be on Rishabh Pant. The young wicket-keeper batsman has plenty of talent, but failed to do justice to it so far. An acid test for him indeed.

NT Bureau