Team India’s dress rehearsal for the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 scheduled to take place on home soil later this year has already begun with the ongoing England series. Virat Kohli & Co are in the process of finalising their playing XI and are currently experimenting with bringing in a couple of new faces – Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Rahul Tewatia and giving them an opportunity to stake a claim in the squad.
In a bid to prepare for the mega event, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is also looking to organise a couple of T20I series at home. Although the management sees the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) as a platform to prepare for the T20 World Cup but BCCI is keen to host a couple of T20I series’ to give the cricketers the best shot for the global event.
India to host two T20I series ahead of T20 World Cup
As per a report in the Times of India, the BCCI is looking to organise T20Is against South Africa and New Zealand at home right before the T20 World Cup. South Africa was last in India back in March 2020 but the series was called-off after the first match due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The forthcoming series would hence be a compensation for last year’s cancelled series.
“South Africa and New Zealand are scheduled to come to India to play a couple of T20I series before the World Cup. The modalities are to be finalized. The board is aware that the team needs to be in touch with the format before the Cup starts,” a senior BCCI official told the paper.
Virat Kohli & Co does not have any T20Is scheduled after the current 5-match assignment against England concludes. The proposed T20Is against the Kiwis and Proteas would hence be of huge help for the team to assess themselves right before the T20 World Cup.
After the IPL 2021 concludes, the Indian team will travel to England to take on New Zealand in the final of the ICC World Test Championship. Though the Asia Cup 2021 is also expected to take place before the T20 World Cup, there isn’t much clarity on its schedule due to the clash with the revised Pakistan Super League (PSL) schedule.