Indian opener KL Rahul is all set to miss the fifth (rescheduled) Test match against England starting on July 1 at the Edgbaston in Birmingham. He suffered a groin injury before the start of the T20I series against South Africa at home.
Rahul, who was named as the captain for the T20I team, was declared ruled out of the series. In his absence, Rishabh Pant took over the captaincy responsibilities, while Ruturaj Gaikwad got a chance to open the innings. KL Rahul will reportedly travel to Germany for the treatment of his injury.
Last year, KL Rahul was one of India’s best players on the England tour. He scored 315 runs in the series, including a brilliant century at the Lord’s cricket ground. His absence is a huge blow for the Indian team. So far, the selectors have not named a replacement for the Indian opener.
In this article, we take a look at the three players who can replace KL Rahul in the Indian Test squad against England.
#3 Mayank Agarwal
Mayank Agarwal is the front-runner to replace KL Rahul in the Indian squad for the fifth test match against England. He has a good record in a 21-match Test career so far. Mayank has scored 1488 runs at an average of 41.33. His run tally includes four test centuries and six fifties.
The right-handed batter played India vs Sri Lanka Test series at home earlier this year. However, he could not make much of an impact averaging just 19.66 in two matches. Mayank will be keen to get back in the Indian Test team and make it count this time.
#2 Priyank Panchal
Priyank Panchal has a prolific record in first-class cricket for Gujarat and has been one of their key players over the last few years. However, he hasn’t gotten an opportunity to make his India debut. In 101 first-class matches, Priyank has scored 7068 runs at an average of 45.30, including twenty-four centuries.
The Gujarat batter can also contribute occasionally with the ball. He has been a part of the Indian squad a few times but was not lucky enough to make his debut, yet. Panchal was a standby player for India’s home series against England last year. With KL Rahul unavailable, he may get his debut cap against England in the fifth Test match.
#1 Prithvi Shaw
Prithvi Shaw already has an impressive record for India in his short test career so far. He has scored 339 runs in nine innings at an average of 42.37 and a strike rate of over 86. On his Test debut against West Indies, he slammed 134 runs off 154 deliveries, smashing 19 fours.
Shaw also has a great first-class record averaging nearly 48 with a top score of 202. However, his struggle in the first Test match against Australia in 2020, led to his ouster from the team. Currently, he is leading the Mumbai team in the Ranji Trophy 2022 season and has looked in decent touch.