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HomeSportsCricket‘Sir, Next Test I Shouldn't Play’: Sridhar Recalls When IND Batter Suggested...

‘Sir, Next Test I Shouldn’t Play’: Sridhar Recalls When IND Batter Suggested to Play Extra Bowler in His Place

India’s first Test against Sri Lanka in Mohali is going to be special in many ways. It’s the 100th match for Virat Kohli in the longest format. On the other hand, it’s the first for Rohit Sharma as full-time captain. Besides these major milestones, it will be interesting to see who grabs the vacant spots of Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane in the middle order as the duo was snubbed for the 2-match series starting from Friday.

One of the front runners is Hanuma Vihari who, despite being an integral part of the Test squad, has been in and out of the playing XI. One couldn’t forget his heroics in the famous Sydney Test in which his formidable partnership with Ravichandran Ashwin saved the game.

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But there was a time when Vihari himself had suggested that he shouldn’t have played in a particular Test, even after scoring a century in the previous appearance. Former India fielding coach R Sridhar recalled an incident from the 2019 Test series against South Africa at home.

In a conversation with Cricbuzz, he said, “During that Vizag Test, I remember he came to me and said ‘Sir, I’d not have played this Test’. Hanuma had played that Test because he had got a hundred in the previous Test in Jamaica. In India, we play with certain combinations… We still won that Test match on Day 5 but it took the class of Shami to get us there and took so much out of him.”

Sridhar further revealed that Vihari suggested playing an extra bowler in the XI instead of having him as the sixth batting option.

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“He said, ‘Sir, next Test I shouldn’t play. We should play with an extra bowler because the way we are batting, we don’t need six batters’. Rohit was on fire in that series, Mayank was batting brilliantly at that time and it was also his first Test in India. Hanuma knew that the captain of the team would always keep the team ahead of him. He understands,” Sridhar concluded.

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