The Irani Trophy will kickstart the new domestic season. The rest of India will face Saurashtra at Rajkot from October 1st. India is in a period of transition and hence, a good domestic season will ensure a chance to play for the country for many cricketers. On that note, here, we predict the strongest Rest of India XI for the Irani Trophy against Saurashtra.
Openers: Mayank Agarwal and Sai Sudharsan
Mayank Agarwal was the highest run-getter in the recent Ranji Trophy campaign. Another similar campaign and Mayank would start knocking on the doors of the Indian Team again.
It is apparent that the management is pushing for Sai Sudharsan to be ready for the next step in his career. Hence, he has been included in this squad.
Middle-Order: Yash Dhull, Hanuma Vihari (C), Sarfaraz Khan and KS Bharat (WK)
We have Yash Dhull and Hanuma Vihari at No.3 and No.4 in this XI. While Yash needs another good season to make it to Team India, Vihari might need an extraordinary run to displace the likes of Shreyas Iyer.
For Sarfaraz, he must keep scoring runs to stay relevant. KS Bharat, on the other hand, will be desperate to leave a mark after losing his spot to Ishan Kishan.
All-Rounders: Shams Mulani
Shams Mulani might get to make his India debut soon. He is a player who has been consistently picking wickets and deserves some chances.
Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel can be injury-prone. Hence, it is best if India plans for a backup. The Mumbai all-rounder will be a fit in this regard.
Bowlers: Pulkit Narang, Yash Dayal, Navdeep Saini and Vidwath Kaverappa
Pulkit Narang will be the other spinner in the squad. Yash Dayal will be a part of the playing XI if Akash Deep is unavailable due to his Asian Games responsibility.
Navdeep Saini and Vidwath Kaverappa will complete the core of this attack. Saini has a chance to return to Team India while Vidwath has to hone his skills further, especially his pace, to get on the radar of the selectors.