India Playing 2 Debutants in a Test for First Time in 7 Years

First time since 2013 India is playing two debutants in a Test match.

2 min read
First time since 2013 India is playing two debutants in a Test match.

Australia have elected to bat first in the second Test vs India.

While Tim Paine is playing an unchanged XI, India have made four changes to the squad that was humbled in the series-opener. Shubman Gill and Mohammed Siraj are making their debuts while Ravindra Jadeja and Rishabh Pant are also in the playing XI.

This is in fact the first time in seven years -- since November 2013 -- that India handed two debut caps before one match. In 2013, the two players were Rohit Sharma and Mohammad Shami.

Interestingly, the last time India handed Test caps to two players, they were also a fast bowler and a batsman. It was in the first of a two-match Test series between India and West Indies when the hosts Rohit Sharma, who was by then a seasoned campaigner in limited overs, and pacer Mohammed Shami made Test debut.

Shami had made his international debut in January that year in an ODI against Pakistan in New Delhi. He has since gone on to become a mainstay in the Indian bowling lineup, picking up 180 wickets in 50 Test matches and the injury that he sustained during the first Test last week in in Adelaide, ruling him out for the rest of the series, led to Siraj being selected for the Boxing Day Test.

Rohit, meanwhile, is expected to take his place at the top of the order for India in the third Test after he is done with self isolation in Australia. While he is recognised as one of the best batsmen in the world in limited overs cricket, he had been unable to establish himself in Test matches until India's 2019 series against South Africa, when he opened for the first time in his career and smashed 529 runs in just four innings.

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