Who Will Make a Test Debut against ENG Sarfaraz Khan or Rajat Patidar?

By Akanksha - February 1, 2024 - Last updated on Feb 01, 2024 07:47 PM
Who Will Make a Test Debut against ENG Sarfaraz Khan or Rajat Patidar?

India will attempt to even the five-match Test series after losing the first Test by winning the second Test, which gets off at Visakhapatnam's Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium on Friday. Even though India had a 190-run lead and was in a commanding position in the first innings, Ollie Pope's outstanding 196 prevented them from shooting themselves in the foot.

Who Will Make a Test Debut against ENG Sarfaraz Khan or Rajat Patidar?

In light of Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul's injuries in Hyderabad, there would be at least two forced changes. Jadeja's replacement is almost a given: Kuldeep Yadav, the left-arm wristie. The main topic of discussion is who, Rajat Patidar or Sarfaraz Khan, would step in for Rahul in his absence.

Although the think-tank has made up its mind, there is a great deal of room for speculation because of its apparent unwillingness to make that decision public. Vikram Rathour, the batting coach, mocked the Patidar vs. Sarfaraz argument on Wednesday by stating, "It will be a tough choice," adopting tact.

Their superior skill as players is what adds value to the squad. We've seen how successful they've been in recent years playing domestic cricket. They may truly benefit the team much on these kinds of wickets. It would be difficult to choose just one of them.

Sarfaraz Khan vs Rajat Patidar

sarfaraz khan

Over a longer period, Sarfaraz has the more astounding stats. He has a remarkable first-class average of 84.42 since 2020. Last week, he hit 161 at a better-than-run-a-ball for India 'A' against the England Lions in Ahmedabad. At 26, he is a destroyer of spin, has 45 first-class appearances under his belt, and although he still has a stocky build, he has shed a lot of weight since Royal Challengers Bangalore benched him for the 2018 season despite having him ahead of more seasoned players like Chris Gayle, KL Rahul, and Yuzvendra Chahal.

Rajat Patidar

Image Source: Twitter

Despite missing the whole 2015 IPL season due to a heel injury, Patidar has been a reliable player for RCB, Madhya Pradesh, and India 'A'. At thirty, he has a solid basis in the fundamentals, is well-organized, and can shift gears with ease. Similar to Sarfaraz but without the same frightening stature, he has drawn attention with his unwavering consistency and fluid batting and was a major factor in his state's historic June 2022 Ranji Trophy victory. Patidar answered with innings of 122 and 30 not out, leading MP to a record six-wicket victory in the same match that Sarfaraz scored 134 and 45 for Mumbai. While Sarfaraz has struggled while playing for India's "A" team, Patidar has established himself as a big-match performer. In the previous seven weeks, Patidar has amassed lean totals of 68 (against South Africa's "A"), 55, and 161 against the Lions.

Nothing about this gives a clear idea of who will play. Due to their strong adherence to tradition, Rohit Sharma and Rahul Dravid, like the previous era of Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri, may find it easier to go with Patidar, who entered the Test team before Sarfaraz. Three days before the series began, Virat Kohli withdrew from the first two games for personal reasons, thus the MP hitter was recruited to replace him. In his previous two matches, Patidar has amassed 111 points in a two-day match and 151 points in the first unofficial "Test," both against the England Lions on tour. These are really strong credentials that are difficult to ignore.

In the middle order, India will want both flare and steadiness, especially with No. 3 Shubman Gill and No. 5 Shreyas Iyer having been horribly out of form for the past eight months in Test cricket. Therefore, one would assume that Patidar, who is older, wiser, and more mature, would be the perfect fit. Before the Test, he appeared to be in fine form at the nets on both days, but Sarfaraz also appeared to be in good form. Sarfaraz smacked the ball cleanly and had the extra benefit of having worked with Dravid while the latter was the India "A" coach. Half a dozen of one and six of the other.

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