Test specialists likely to tour New Zealand with India A squad ahead of Australia series

first_imgWould India have fared better in South Africa and England if they had opted for more match practice before the Test series? In hindsight, it seems like a rhetorical question.Coach Ravi Shastri met Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) Committee of Administrators (CoA) after the England series and maintained what he has said publicly: “1-4 scoreline did not reflect the progress team has made.”But another defeat in Australia towards the end of the year would mean a hat-trick of away losses — something he would find hard to defend.The team management was bashed by former cricketers and pundits alike for their lack of practice and attitude in England before the Test series. India went to South Africa without playing a practice game and lost the series three-match series 1-2. Although the team played well, they failed to win important moments of play and ended up surrendering the series to the Proteas.In England, they did play a single warm-up game ahead of the Test series but same order followed. Virat Kohli’s men went down 1-4 despite putting up a good show. Shastri maintained that India are one of the best touring teams but also admitted that more practice would help in future tours.And, this time an arrangement is being made to prepare the Indian batsmen for the challenge that is going to be thrown at them in the form of Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood during their tour of Down Under later his year.advertisementWhile fitting in more practice games ahead of the four-match Test series starting December 6 has been spoken of, squeezing in two to three practice games in a 10 days between the T20 series and first Test would not be possible.Another alternative arrangement of getting some Test regulars to play in an A tour to New Zealand in November is being mooted. This would also give batsmen an opportunity to take the expertise of India ‘A’ coach Rahul Dravid.”The team management thought limited overs games were good enough to prepare for the test series in England. But that wasn’t enough. Now the New Zealand A tour will be in similar conditions to Australia and Rahul Dravid is more than willing to allow Test regulars space in the India A playing eleven to give them practice time. The batsmen in particular need to make the most of it,” a BCCI source in the know told India Today.The Indian team that lost in South Africa and England canceled a solitary practice game in South Africa and turned a scheduled four-day practice game in England to a three-day contest.However, assuming that Test regulars get some match practice time in New Zealand, the BCCI management team would still be left with simulating playing conditions like Australia and getting quality opposition to compete against.last_img

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