Sarfaraz Khan has earned his well-deserved call-up in the Indian Test team for the second Test against England in Vizag starting February 2. India lost the first Test by 28 runs, trailing in the series and dropping to fifth. position in the WTC points table.
Sarfaraz along with Washington Sundar and Saurabh Kumar were added to the Indian team after KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja were ruled out due to injury problems. Sarfaraz replaced Rahul, while Sundar and Kumar were named as possible replacements for Ravindra Jadeja.
Given how some Indian players played in the first Test, Sarfaraz’s selection could be on the line in the second Test. The Mumbai batsman has astonishing first-class numbers with 3912 runs in just 45 matches and just 66 innings. Meanwhile, he scored 14 hundreds and 11 fifties, with an average of almost 70.
Over the last two Ranji Trophy seasons, he has been extraordinary. In the 2022-23 season, he amassed 556 runs in six games, at an impressive average of 92.66, which included three centuries. The previous season witnessed even more staggering figures, with Sarfaraz amassing 982 runs at a staggering average of 122.75.
Sarfaraz Khan has a very good record in first class: AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers, while previewing the India-England second Test on his YouTube channel, backed Sarfaraz to make his debut in the second Test saying that he deserves it.
“It’s very exciting for me. His record in first-class cricket is quite outstanding, and if there is anyone who deserves it, it is certainly him. He has played 66 innings, 3912 runs and an average of 69.85. 14 hundreds and 11 fifties, guys, that’s not normal.” said AB de Villiers.
“That’s a very, very good first-class record. “I know it is a big step up to international cricket against England, on the biggest stage, I hope he gets a chance because Rajat Patidar has also been playing well.” he further added.
Kuldeep Yadav can replace Ravindra Jadeja: AB de Villiers
De Villiers further said that Kuldeep Yadav can replace Ravindra Jadeja in the next Test. The BCCI named Sundar as a comparable replacement for Jadeja as Sundar is an all-round specialist. However, De Villiers backed the spinner specialist to replace Jadeja stating that he has an X-factor with the ball.
“It can only be Kuldeep Yadav, who doesn’t offer as much with the bat or in the field, but he does have a lot of X-factor with the ball in his hand. Maybe he gives India a little more variation with the bowling department because there were Axar Patel and Ravindra Jadeja, two left-arm spinners.” De Villiers said about Kuldeep.
India fell to fifth position in the WTC points table after the defeat in the first Test. Now they will need to win the second test to achieve parity in the five-match series that will be played in conditions conducive to the effects at different venues.
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