New Delhi: The Sandeep Patil-led national selectors will meet on Monday to announce the Indian team for the upcoming series against visiting New Zealand.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), for the first time, will announce the squad for the three-match Test series, which starts on September 22.
The selectors are likely to trim down the 17-member Indian squad which toured West Indies to 15, but it doesn't seem there would be much changes.
However, the focus will be Rohit Sharma, who remains the weakest link in the Indian batting line-up despite being one of the most talented batsmen around.
He played only one match during the West Indies tour, scoring 9 and 41, at Gros Islet. Unluckily for him, the Port of Spain Test was abandoned.
And waiting in the wings to replace him are the likes of Manish Pandey, Shreyas Iyer and Karun Nair.
One intriguing candidate emerging for the opening slot is veteran Gautam Gambhir, thanks to his brilliant performaces in the ongoing Duleep Trophy. But whom he replaces if the bigger question.
Lokesh Rahul graped the opportunity available, when Murali Vijay was out due to fitness issues, and Shikhar Dhawan always have a strong case when it comes to home series.
Players to face the axe are Stuart Binny, Shardul Thakur, with Ravichandran Ashwin taking up the role of all-rounder pretty good.
Here are the probable 15: Openers — Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul; Middle order — Virat Kohli (C), Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma/Manish Pandey; wicket-keeper — Wriddhiman Saha; spinners — Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Amit Mishra; pacers — Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav