The third and final T20I between India and New Zealand is all set to take place on Sunday, November 21, at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata. India has dominated the T20I series and is leading 2-0.
On Friday in Ranchi, India defeated New Zealand convincingly by 7 wickets. Bowling first, the Indian bowlers, restricted New Zealand to 153 runs in 20 overs. Debutant Harshal Patel was the pick of the bowlers with two wickets. The Indian openers, KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma led the chase, helping India to get the target in just 18 overs.
— BCCI (@BCCI) November 19, 2021
With the series in pocket, the Indian team will look to give opportunities to the youngsters in the team. Let’s take a look at three changes India could make in the playing XI for the third T20I.
1. Ruturaj Gaikwad
The Indian openers have done outstandingly well in the two T20Is played so far in the series. However, with the series in pocket, India may look for a third opener in the team. Right-handed batter, Ruturaj Gaikwad may replace skipper Rohit Sharma or vice-captain KL Rahul for the next T20I.
Gaikwad earned the orange cap in the Indian Premier League 2021 season. He scored 635 runs in 16 matches, at an average of 45.36. The opening batter will be keen to get an opportunity and continue his dream run even at the international level.
2. Avesh Khan
The first two T20s in the series witnessed Venkatesh Iyer and Harshal Patel making their debut for India. Pacer, Avesh Khan could be the latest debutant for India in the third T20I at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Avesh was the second leading wicket-taker in the Indian Premier League 2021 season. He took 24 wickets, in 16 matches at an average of 18.75. Deepak Chahar, who has been very expensive with the ball in the T20I series, could make way for Avesh Khan.
3. Yuzvendra Chahal
After a disappointing performance in the first phase of the Indian Premier League 2021, Yuzvendra Chahal made a fantastic comeback in the UAE leg. He took 14 wickets in eight matches and finished the season with 10 wickets.
Chahal has not yet got an opportunity in the ongoing T20I series against New Zealand. However, in the third T20I, he may come in place of Ravichandran Ashwin, who has been very economical in the series.