KL Rahul replaces Rishabh Pant in Playing XI; Prasidh, Krunal handed debuts

Having not played the last T20s in India's 3-2 series win over England, KL Rahul returned into the playing XI for the One-Day series opener on Tuesday.

KL Rahul replaces Rishabh Pant in India's playing XI for first ODI.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Having not played the last T20 in India's 3-2 series win over England, KL Rahul returned into the playing XI for the One-Day series opener in Pune on Tuesday.

India vs England Live Score, 1st ODI Updates: Kohli and Co. to bat; Krunal, Prasidh handed debuts  

Rahul's inclusion comes close on the heels of his poor form in the recently concluded England T20s. In his last four T20Is, he managed two ducks and scores of 14 and 1. Rahul replaces keeper-batsman Rishabh Pant. Rahul's form in ODIs at No. 5 may have given him the upper hand over Pant, who was omitted from India's squad for the Australia ODIs. Since then, Pant has regained his lost touch with the bat and behind the stumps, playing key roles in India's Test series wins against Australia and England.

Former India wicketkeeper M. S. K. Prasad, who until recently was chairman of the national selection committee, had spoken in support of Rahul's dual role.  “Rahul was a wicketkeeper in the under-19 days. Subsequently, he had left wicketkeeping. But over the last few years, he has been behind the stumps (in the IPL and for Karnataka). He really worked hard on it and he looks very natural,” Prasad told Sportstar. “It is not that the role is thrust upon him. He is enjoying it. And when a player of KL’s stature is behind the stumps, it is good for the bowlers as he can guide the likes of Kuldeep Yadav or Yuzvendra Chahal. In T20s and ODIs, he is a big asset.”

 

Krunal Pandya and Prasidh Krishna were handed ODI debuts against England. Pandya was in terrific form in the recently concluded Vijay Hazare Trophy, captaining Baroda, scoring 388 runs in five matches and picking five wickets. Krishna led the wicket charts for Karnataka with 14 scalps in seven matches.