India A squad for NZ series: Priyank Panchal to lead red-ball team; Sarfaraz, Patidar included

Priyank Panchal will lead the 15-member India A team in the four-day matches which will be played in Bengaluru.

FILE PHOTO: Priyank Panchal will lead India A in its four-day matches against New Zealand in September.

FILE PHOTO: Priyank Panchal will lead India A in its four-day matches against New Zealand in September. | Photo Credit: VIVEK BENDRE

Priyank Panchal will lead the 15-member India A team in the four-day matches which will be played in Bengaluru.

Priyank Panchal, one of Gujarat’s seasoned campaigners, will lead the India A team for the three four-day matches against New Zealand A next month.

The national selection committee decided to go-ahead with Panchal, who has been a regular member of the India A squads and had also toured South Africa with the India senior Test team earlier this year, as the captain. The batting department will revolve around Bengal captain Abhimanyu Easwaran, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Rajat Patidar and Sarfaraz Khan, who had a memorable run in the Ranji Trophy for Mumbai.

The youngster from Hyderabad, Tilak Varma, has also been rewarded for his consistent performances at the domestic level and also in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Wicketkeepers K.S. Bharat and Upendra Yadav have been drafted into the squad, while the pace bowling department comprises Prasidh Krishna, Arzan Nagwaswalla and the youngster Umran Malik. Yash Dayal, too, features in the list along with Rahul Chahar, Saurabh Kumar and Kuldeep Yadav.

The selection committee has opted for the tried and tested names and has gone ahead with the players who have been part of the A teams for a while.

This will be the first A tour to be held in India after the pandemic and New Zealand A will be featuring in three four-day matches and as many one-day games. The red-ball matches will be held in Bengaluru and Hubli. According to a statement by BCCI secretary Jay Shah, the squads for the white-ball games to be played in Chennai will be announced later.

Bahutule, Kotak part of coaching staff

Sitanshu Kotak and former India leg spinner Sairaj Bahutule will be part of the coaching staff for the three four-day matches. Bahutule was recently part of the India’s ODI squad against Zimbabwe, while Kotak has earlier worked with A teams.

The BCCI now has a pool of coaches employed under the aegis of NCA and they are rotated across assignments of India A, Emerging and U19 teams.

Gill for Glamorgan

Earlier, media reports had claimed that Shubman Gill will be leading the India A team.

However, Gill does not feature in the team and will be featuring for Glamorgan for the remainder of the County Championship. The youngster from Punjab has been in prime form with the national team in ODIs and it is believed that he could play four games for Glamorgan, which is currently placed third in Division II of the County Championships.

Gill is expected to leave for the United Kingdom by next week, ahead of the team’s game against Worcestershire on September 5. However, it will depend on his visa.

INDIA A SQUAD FOR FOUR-DAY MATCHES
Priyank Panchal (c), Abhimanyu Easwaran, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Rajat Patidar, Sarfaraz Khan, Tilak Varma, KS Bharat (wk), Upendra Yadav (wk), Kuldeep Yadav, Saurabh Kumar, Rahul Chahar, Prasidh Krishna, Umran Malik, Mukesh Kumar, Yash Dayal, Arzan Nagwaswalla.
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