Test Cricket

India vs West Indies 2023: Best Predicted Test Series Playing 11

Yashasvi Jaiswal expected to debut as we look at the strongest predicted playing 11 for Team India for the 2023 Test series vs West Indies. 

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Friday, June 23 announced the official Test series squad for Team India for the upcoming West Indies tour. India will be beginning their World Test Championship 2023-25 campaign with a 2-match Test series vs West Indies starting July 12 in their backyard. 

The squad comes with some tough chances as two of India’s key players who played the last WTC final, Cheteshwar Pujara and Umesh Yadav aren’t a part of the squad. In addition, KL Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, and Jasprit Bumrah are still recovering, thus this gives an opportunity for the young guns to cement their place in the squad. 

So, with a total of 16 members being selected for the Test series, how about we take a look at the strongest predicted playing 11 that Team India will put forward for the 2023 Test series vs West Indies? Meanwhile, as per the leading website, https://bettiltindia.in/, India are favourite to win the Test series vs West Indies with odds at 1.24. 

India vs West Indies 2023 Official Test Series Squad for Team India:

Batters: Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli & Yashasvi Jaiswal

WKs: Ishan Kishan & KS Bharat

All-rounders: Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja & Shardul Thakur

Bowlers: Jaydev Unadkat, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar & Navdeep Saini

Team India’s Strongest Predicted Playing 11

#1: Top-order: Rohit Sharma (c), Yashasvi Jaiswal & Shubman Gill 

The most important question that Team India would face is who will be the replacement for Cheteshwar Pujara, who is no longer a part of the Indian Test team. Pujara was a regular number 3 for Team India in Tests, and his absence has given us three ideal options that India can explore. 

It is slightly surprising that India have selected four openers in the squad, and three of them will be forming the top-order for Team India. While Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill select for themselves, one of Ruturaj Gaikwad or Yashasvi Jaiswal will make his debut for Team India in Tests. 

The tricky question is who makes the cut, and at what position. Now, here’s a scenario that looks more ideal. Shubman Gill is a brilliant limited-overs opener, but there could be a scenario where India may want him to continue the role that Kohli has been playing until now, which is the number 4 position. 

So, it won’t be wrong to say that India may take this bold step of playing Shubman Gill at number 3, and eventually prepare him for number 4 once Kohli is gone. With that, between Yashasvi Jaiswal and Ruturaj Gaikwad, left-hander Yashasvi Jaiswal looks all set to mark his debut as an opener. However, it may also happen that Gill continues playing as the opener with Jaiswal at number 3. 

#2:Middle-order: Virat Kohli & Ajinkya Rahane 

Coming to the middle-order, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane should continue to play at number 4 and number 5 respectively. The management has trusted Rahane to deliver, and also made him the vice-captain. Meanwhile, Kohli would want to continue his form which he gained against Australia, and get back to competing with the Fab 4.

#3: Lower-order: Ravindra Jadeja, KS Bharat (wk) & Ravichandran Ashwin

Talking about lower-order, All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja should continue to be an important member connecting the batters and bowlers at the number 6 position. For the wicket-keeper position, KS Bharat should continue to be backed by the management ahead of Ishan Kishan; at least for this series.

Now, for the number 8 position in England, India backed Shardul Thakur, the pace all-rounder ahead of Ravichandran Ashwin, the spin all-rounder. While India may continue to play with Shardul as the pacer, they shall also select Ravichandran Ashwin as the primary spinner in the squad.  

India missed a big chance of not selecting Ashwin against Australia. The Oval pitch would have suited him perfectly, and Australia had a lot of lefties that could have gone in favour of him. Nevertheless, India would not want to repeat that mistake on West Indies pitches that also favour spin bowling. 

#4: Pacers: Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat & Mohammed Siraj  

Coming to the pacers, India will be without Mohammed Shami as the pacer has been rested after hectic 4-5 months. In the absence of Shami, Siraj should lead the pace attack for India. With Umesh also not there, Jaydev Unadkat, the left-arm pacer should get an opportunity as the second pacer. Whereas Shardul should play the role of a supporting pacer. 

India vs West Indies 2023 Strongest Predicted Test Series Playing 11

Rohit Sharma (c), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Ravindra Jadeja, KS Bharat (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat & Mohammed Siraj  

So, that’s about the strongest playing 11 for Team India for the Test series vs West Indies. Overall, 10 players select for themselves. The only questions that India will face is what position Gill bats, and who among Yashasvi Jaiswal and Ruturaj Gaikwad makes his debut for Team India.  

India vs West Indies 2023 Test Series Schedule:

  • 1st Test – July 12-16 @ Dominica, 7:30 pm IST onwards
  • 2nd Test – July 20-24 @ Trinidad, 7:30 pm IST onwards

Thanks for reading! What’s your India vs West Indies 2023 Best playing 11 for the Test series? Please email your thoughts to business@cricalytics.com

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