India vs New Zealand: ‘Can be an ideal candidate’ - Sanjay Bangar names young player to play key role in New Zealand
Former India batting/assistant coach Sanjay Bangar believes having a seam-bowling all-rounder in New Zealand conditions would give Team India the perfect balance in the test series. He was speaking to ESPNCricinfo in which he picked his squad and backed Tamil Nadu all-rounder Vijay Shankar to be the player who could get the job done.
“If they go in with 17 players, then there is place for a reserve batsman and all-rounder. Now New Zealand conditions are ideal for seam-bowling all-rounders,” Bangar said on ‘ESPNcricinfo’.
“You see what an impact Colin de Grandhomme has had on the New Zealand team. So someone like Vijay Shankar can be an ideal candidate for that slot, given he is fit wherein it gives the right balance to the squad if he bats at No.6.
“It will also give India a batting depth and a fifth bowling option.”
India have dominated the World Test Championship points table and have won all their games so far. However, the upcoming series against New Zealand will be their biggest test. “The WC of Test cricket and we are up there in the rankings. If we win two other overseas, say one in New Zealand and one in Australia, we should be serious contenders for reaching Lords. And there is T20 cricket so it is good that we are playing that, head coach Ravi Shastri spoke about the challenges at hand.
The Indian selectors are all set to announce the squad for the Test as well as limited overs series which will travel to New Zealand. While, a majority of the side picks themselves up, there will be debates over the third opener. As per reports, both Shubman Gill and KL Rahul will vie for the third opener’s slot while Vijay Shankar, who has taken the spot of Hardik as the all-rounder in the ‘A’ squad, might also be included as the seam bowling all-rounder in the main team.