On Friday, BCCI announced the Test squad for the upcoming tour of West Indies. As expected, there were quite a few surprises, notably after the loss in the finals of the World Test Championship. Interestingly, Ruturaj Gaikwad got a chance in the XI, despite him not yet having a big season in the Ranji Trophy, as yet. There were a few other contenders for this spot. On that note, here, we take a look at three players India could have picked instead of Ruturaj Gaikwad for the West Indies Test series.
1) Abhimanyu Easwaran
The West Bengal cricketer has been on the fringes of the Indian Team for a while. He has also been a part of the setup for a few overseas tours till now. However, he is yet to get a chance in the playing XI.
Considering his form has stayed intact for the last few years at the domestic level, it would have been a wise move to hand him his debut against West Indies. This series could have allowed him to get to the next step of his career. However, unfortunately, he did not get his chance.
2) Priyank Panchal
Priyank Panchal is one of the players India could have picked instead of Ruturaj Gaikwad for the West Indies Test series. The Gujarat prolific run-scorer has also been with the Indian Team in the past.
He is yet to make his debut, though. Just like Easwaran, he could also play at No.3, a position now vacated by Cheteshwar Pujara. Maybe, his age had a role in him not getting a chance in the squad.
3) Sarfaraz Khan
He has brought the doors down completely but something is still stopping the Mumbai middle-order batter from getting a chance in the Indian Team. It could be that he may not be a great option at No.3 or as an opener, a position for which Ruturaj has been selected.
Nevertheless, he could still get a chance, thanks to his age. Much would also depend on the consistency he can show in the next season of Ranji Trophy.