Virat Kohli-led India Test team departs for South Africa

Written by Vipin Darwade

Team India on early Thursday morning departed for South Africa to take part in a three-match Test and ODI series, which begins on December 26. The Indian team’s departure was preceded by an explosive press conference from Test captain Virat Kohli, who minced no words as he addressed the controversies surrounding Indian cricket over the past week.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) shared pictures from the flight as the Indian Test team flew to Johannesburg.

“All buckled up, South Africa bound,” wrote the BCCI.

Earlier on Wednesday, Kohli opened up on matters relating to his ODI captaincy snub and seeming disarray in communication between him and the BCCI, while reiterating that his relationship with Rohit Sharma remains strong as ever.

Rohit was ruled out of the Test series with a hamstring injury and Kohi insisted that India will miss his abilities on the South African tour.

“Will miss his abilities a lot. He’s proven in England already that he’s really worked his Test game out, and the opening partnership was very important for us to play in that series. Obviously, with his experience and skill, we will miss those qualities,” said Virat Kohli in a virtual conference.

“That said, it’s an opportunity for Mayank [Agarwal] and KL [Rahul] to step up and solidify that start for us and make sure the good work is carried on in this series,” he added.

India’s squad for South Africa Tests: Virat Kohli (Captain), Priyank Panchal, KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), R Ashwin, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj.

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Vipin Darwade