Ishant Sharma may make Test debut: Dravid

By Qaiser Mohammad Ali


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Dhaka : India will either play three spinners or rookie pacer Ishant Sharma will make his debut in the second Test match against Bangladesh starting here Friday, Indian skipper Rahul Dravid said Thursday.

"We have picked the XII. (V.V.S.) Laxman, V.R.V. (Singh) and Yuvi (Yuvraj Singh) are out," Dravid said after practice session in sunny but humid conditions at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur – suburb of Bangladeshi capital.

V.R.V. Singh played in the drawn first Test in Chittagong but failed to impress while Laxman and Yuvraj were omitted from the first Test as well.

"We will either play three spinners or Ishant [Sharma] will get his first game tomorrow (Friday). We will take a look at the wicket tomorrow morning and decide," he said.

The three spinners are leggie Anil Kumble, left-armer Rajesh Pawar, who is yet to make his international debut, and off spinner Ramesh Powar, who bowled decently on his debut in Chittagong.

Delhi speedster Sharma, who was flown in as a replacement for injured Munaf Patel during the Chittagong Test, is also to play in an international match.

The Indian selectors may have been encouraged to play three spinners after taking a look at the grassless pitch Thursday, the hot and humid weather as well as how Bangladesh have utilised there spinners, chiefly the left-armers.

Bangladesh used veteran Mohammad Rafique, Enamul Haque (junior) and Sakibul Hasan, all left-armers, to good effect in Chittagong.

India XII: Rahul Dravid (captain), Wasim Jaffer, Sachin Tendulkar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wicket-keeper), Sourav Ganguly, Dinesh Karthick, Zaheer Khan, Rudra Pratap Singh, Ishant Sharma, Anil Kumble, Ramesh Powar and Rajesh Pawar.