Former India cricketer and one of the famous commentators, Aakash Chopra, has picked his Indian Test squad for the upcoming series against South Africa. He has dropped Ajinkya Rahane and Shubman Gill from the team. The two represented India in the last Test series against New Zealand.

India are scheduled to play three Tests and as many ODIs, with the first Test starting on December 26.

While the national selection committee is expected to pick a jumbo squad, Aakash named just 15 players in his team.

“I have picked Rohit as my opener, without doubt. I have picked Rahul as my opener, without doubt. Rohit and Rahul was a straightforward decision, they are doing well. They forged a new partnership in England and did very well.”

He kept Cheteshwar Pujara in the squad.

“I have kept Pujara in my team and I have picked my XI as well. I will play him at No. 3 in this team. There is a lot of pressure on him and this tour is very important for him but as of now, Pujara is there.”

“At No. 4, I have got Kohli, there is no doubt in that. He has struck centuries in South Africa and the expectation is that the century wait will end here. He will have to score runs, the batsman Kohli will have to help the captain Kohli.”

Aakash preferred Shreyas Iyer over Rahane.

“At No. 5, I have picked Shreyas Iyer. Who can make him sit out after what he did on his debut? If he is at five, that means Ajinkya Rahane is not in my XI. We want to maintain the continuity and want to go with a player who has scored runs.”

Rishabh Pant was included as the wicket-keeper batter.

“Rishabh Pant at six, five batters and a keeper. Pant as a keeper and batter is in my side. I am not changing the captain’s philosophy, he has said that he will play five bowlers and I have made the team according to that.”

Ravindra Jadeja and R Ashwin were kept as the two spin options.

He picked Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj as the three pacers.

Aakash Chopra’s Indian Test squad for South Africa tour: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Mayank Agarwal, Hanuma Vihari, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav

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