Sourav Ganguly XI vs Virat Kohli XI: Aakash Chopra feels Dada’s team will beat the current one
What if Sachin Tendulkar faced Jasprit Bumrah in a Test match? And Ravichandran Ashwin tried to outfox Rahul Dravid? Or Zaheer Khan tried to go through the defences of Cheteshwar Pujara with the use of Sourav Ganguly’s strategy? A dream-like situation isn’t it? Former India opener Aakash Chopra tapped on that dream situation by deciding to make two Indian Test teams with one being led by Sourav Ganguly and the other one by current captain Virat Kohli.
Chopra, who had played under former India captain and current BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, assembled two hypothetical teams for nostalgia.
“We went to Australia and drew the series there. We went to Pakistan and defeated them. In India, we drew one series and lost one series to Australia. And Sourav Ganguly’s team even drew the series in England. It was a fairly good team, a team which taught us how to win abroad,” Chopra said in a video uploaded on his Youtube channel.
“Virat Kohli’s team has defeated Australia in their home conditions, the only team to have done so in Indian cricket history. But they lost in South Africa and lost quite badly in England. In South Africa, they came close but lost the series 2-1.”
In Sourav Ganguly’s XI, Chopra decided to open with himself and Virender Sehwag, while he picked Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar as his No. 3 and No. 4 respectively. Although he batted majorly at No.6 during his playing days, Chopra named VVS Laxman as the No.5 batsman followed by the captain Sourav Ganguly.
Chopra picked Parthiv Patel as the ‘keeper of the side and went in with Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh as his two spinners. Zaheer Khan and Ajit Agarkar were picked as the seamers of the side.
When it came to Virat Kohli’s XI, which is India’s current Test side, Chopra named Rohit Sharma and Mayank Agarwal as the openers followed rock-solid Cheteshwa Pujara at No.3. Captain Virat Kohli took the No.4 spot while his deputy Ajinkya Rahane was slotted in at No.5.
At No.6, Chopra went in with the impressive Hanuma Vihari followed by wicket-keeper Wriddhiman Saha, whom Chopra referred to as one of the best in the world.
R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were preferred as the spinners. Chopra, understandably, had some difficulties in picking the two seamers but went in with Ishant Sharma and anyone between Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami.
The former India opener after doing a man-to-man comparison finally came to the conclusion that the Ganguly-led team would end up beating Kohli’s side.
Sourav Ganguly’s XI: Virender Sehwag, Aakash Chopra, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Sourav Ganguly, Parthiv Patel, Harbhajan Singh, Anil Kumble, Zaheer Khan, Ajit Agarkar
Virat Kohli’s XI: Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami/Jasprit Bumrah