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Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2020/21: 4 Cricketers who can make their debut

It was even stevens as far as the white-ball leg of the tour was concerned as Australia won the ODI series 2-1 while India recovered lost ground in the T20I series, winning it by a similar margin of 2-1. The action now moves to the intriguing and tough red-ball leg as India lock horns with Australia for a four-Test series contested for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

The Indian test contingent has already played a tour game in Sydney with the red ball and are now bracing themselves for the pink-ball Test with another tour game at the same venue.

Kohli’s early departure to attend the birth of his first child and an unfortunate injury to Warner allows few domestic players from both sides to make their anticipated debut and leave a stellar impact on the game. Here are the 5 cricketers from both teams, who are likely to make their debut in the upcoming Test series down under:

1. Shubhman Gill

This youngster from Punjab is considered to be the next big thing in Indian cricket. He is looked upon as a successor to Kohli, who can carry the legacy forward and write new chapters of glory.

Gill is most likely to make his debut in the second Test after Kohli returns to India. The elegant right-hander has scored 2133 runs from 21 first-class games at an average of 73.5 and strike rate of 73.4. Unfortunately, he couldn’t carry on for much longer in the tour games with scores of 29 and 43 in the first and second tour game respectively.

The low scores shouldn’t do much harm to his reputation as the future middle-order batsman, who has displayed enough temperament and class to pile on runs in the multi-day format. A successful series for Gill will go a long way in India dominating the proceedings and the batsman cementing his place in the illustrious Indian lineup.

2. Mohammad Siraj

Siraj‘s enviable growth as a bowler now sees him make the Indian Test squad for the big series down under. Injuries to premier bowlers, Ishant and Kumar has kept the pacer in the mix and in all probability might soon make his debut for the ‘men in blue’ in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

The Hyderabad pacer has picked 147 wickets from 36 first-class games bowling at an average of 23 and an economy rate of 3.11. Siraj bowled fairly well in the two tour games with figures of 3-83 and 1-26 in the first and second game respectively.

With Bumrah and Shami slotting themselves at their respective places, the competition only exists for the third seamer and given the experience of bowling on the land previously, Umesh has been chosen the first test and also has put on impressive bowling spell. That might surely disappoint Siraj but it is important for him to keep bowling well and create doubts in the minds of the batsmen, putting him in better stead to pick the desirable fifers.

3. Navdeep Saini

This fast bowler from Delhi has risen through the ranks given his consistent performances for the state team and RCB at the IPL. His pace and the ability to bowl the hard length and the yorkers provides the pacer with a slight edge over his other pace bowling compatriots.

Saini has picked 125 wickets from 46 first-class games at an average of 28.3 and economy rate of 2.81. He was mighty impressive on the first day of second tour game, finishing with figures of 3-19 in 5.2 overs.

As said, the extreme pace that he possesses is the X-factor which will help India while bowling on the bouncy and pacy tracks of Australia. Owing to his height, he extracts steep bounce off the surface and makes life hell for the batsmen.

If chosen, India can use him as an aggressive wicket-taking option, who can not just dry up the runs for the opposition, but assist his fellow bowlers in picking wickets, facilitating the prospect of hunting in a pack in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

4. Will Pucovski

This bright Victorian batsman has already turned heads with his stellar performances at the recently concluded Sheffield Shield and is the frontrunner in the race for the opening spot.

In 22 first-class games, Pucovski has garnered 1720 runs at an average of 55.5 and strike rate of 50.7. He scored 23 runs in the second innings of the first tour game before a concussion ruled him out from participating in the remainder of the fixture. He’s currently observing the concussion protocols and doing all possible things to be fit for a major chunk of the series.

Considering the double-hundreds which he scored at the Shield games recently, he looks set to climb the big ladder and showcase his potential for Australia.

His prolonged stay at the crease will make things easier for the hosts and assist their bowlers in going all-out in search of wickets. It remains to be seen when he gets back to action, bestowing India with a slight relief till his illustrious bat starts to talk again. with Joe Burns dismissed cheaply in the first innings of the 1st test, he will be looking forward to making his debut in Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

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