Skipper Virat Kohli slammed a brilliant 58-ball 91 in a intra-squad warm-up match against KL Rahul-led Ranjitsinhji XI on Sunday as his team CK Nayudu XI won by five wickets. The match was part of India's preparation for the upcoming ODI and T20I series against Australia which starts from November 27.
KL Rahul's Ranjitsinhji XI batted first and posted a total of 235 runs on the board in 40 overs. Shikhar Dhawan and Mayank Agarwal opened the batting for the team. Leading from the front, KL Rahul scored 83 runs off just 66 balls.
Chasing the total, Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill opened the innings for CK Nayudu XI. Kohli's team won the match by five wickets and with 26 balls to spare.
The updates of the match were posted by the Indian Cricket Team on their official Instagram handle. According to the updates, the match was interrupted by a passing shower.
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Meanwhile, the visiting Indian team has been training for over a week now and while the primary aim is to retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, winning the white ball games will certainly increase their confidence.
For skipper Virat Kohli, the key will be to get the combination right in the 50-over games, which are currently low priority going into the next one year with a World Test Championship final spot and the T20 World Cup on their minds.
The Indian team management has to also think over the ideal opening combination for the upcoming three-match ODI series, with a toss-up between Mayank Agarwal and Shubman Gill for the second opener's slot on the cards.
At least, nine players select themselves in the first XI for the ODIs. The in-form Shikhar Dhawan, skipper Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, wicketkeeper-batsman KL Rahul (another opening option), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah are automatic picks.
While Mohammed Shami may start in the first ODI with India's current fastest bowler Navdeep Saini for company, there is a chance that Shardul Thakur may get a look-in if the Indian team management decides to rest one among Shami and Jasprit Bumrah looking at their workload.
(With PTI inputs)