Akash Deep could get Test cap in Jasprit Bumrah’s absence in Ranchi | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: The uncapped pace bowler Akash Deep has emerged as the leading candidate to partner Mohammed Siraj in the fourth Test against England, following his diligent participation in optional training sessions in Ranchi on Thursday.
During the optional training, the 27-year-old right-arm pacer was observed bowling at full intensity alongside his Bengal teammate Mukesh Kumar at the nets on Wednesday.Furthermore, he engaged in an extensive batting session on the eve of the Test, with only five other Indian players attending practice.
India have been compelled to hand debut caps to Rajat Patidar, Dhruv Jurel, and Sarfaraz Khan thus far due to the absence of Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, and Shreyas Iyer.
With pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah also being rested for the Ranchi Test, Akash Deep appears to be in contention for the coveted Test spot.
“Anybody who gets into the Indian team has to be a special cricketer,” the home team batting coach Vikram Rathour said of Akash Deep, who was drafted into the India squad after taking 12 wickets in three matches against the England Lions.
“He (looks) like a really good bowler who has done really well in domestic cricket. He has got a decent pace, bowls a good line, looks really good.”
The upcoming Test in Ranchi is anticipated to have overcast conditions and be much cooler compared to the previous three venues. This shift in weather may bring seamers into play before the usual wear and tear on the pitch occurs at the JSCA Stadium Complex.
Given these conditions, Akash Deep’s pace and skill with in-dippers could prove valuable. If Akash Deep secures a spot in the playing XI on Friday, he would become the 313th Indian cricketer to don the prestigious India Test cap.
Mukesh, the alternative pace-bowling option, who was released ahead of the third Test in Rajkot, is back in contention for the upcoming fourth Test. In the second Test at Visakhapatnam, he remained wicketless in the first innings, bowling seven overs and conceding 44 runs. However, he made a breakthrough in the second innings by dismissing England tail-ender Shoaib Bashir.
Mukesh’s lacklustre performance in Vizag makes a case for Akash Deep to be included for the Test.
England have already finalised their playing XI, bringing back Ollie Robinson in place of Mark Wood. Robinson will be partnering with the experienced James Anderson, while Shoaib Bashir, Tom Hartley, and part-time bowler Joe Root constitute the visiting team’s spin attack.
During the optional practice session, India had a light turnout, with only Shubman Gill, R Ashwin, Akash Deep, KS Bharat, Washington Sundar, and Devdutt Padikkal participating in the nets.
While Ashwin was engaged in inspecting the pitch alongside Rahul Dravid and other support staff members, Gill focused on taking throwdowns from local bowlers.
India lead the five-Test series 2-1.
(With PTI inputs)

Leave a Comment