Proteas

Rohit Sharma picked as India's Test vice-captain as squad named for SA Tour

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Rohit Sharma. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images)
Rohit Sharma. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images)
  • Rohit Sharma has been named as India's vice-captain for their upcoming tour of South Africa.
  • The belligerent opener will also be India's limited-overs skipper.
  • He's got a score to settle in South Africa after two other poor tours.

Blockbusting opener Rohit Sharma has been elevated to India's Test match vice-captaincy for their upcoming tour of South Africa.

Sharma, who didn't take part in the New Zealand Test series that India won 1-0 after their massive triumph in the recently concluded second Test, has also been rewarded with the ODI and T20 leadership.

The 34-year-old from Nagpur has been in excellent form for his country when they toured England and in his nine Tests against South Africa, he has scored 678 runs at an average of 42.37.

That average dips to 15.37 in South Africa from four matches, with only 123 runs accrued alongside a high score of 47.

Having played in the middle order on previous tours, he'll open in what is regarded as one of the toughest countries to open the batting in.

In the T20 series against New Zealand, he reeled off scores of 48, 55 and 56 while his return in the England series was 368 runs at an average of 52.57. He also scored his first Test 100 outside of India in the series.

His elevation to the Test vice-captaincy has led to Ajinkya Rahane's demotion from the position, while he replaced Virat Kohli as the team's white-ball leader.

India's middle-order congestion has been eased somewhat with injuries to Ravindra Jadeja and Shubman Gill clearing any selection headaches.

Axar Patel and Rahul Chahar have also been ruled with injury while Hanuma Vihari, Navdeep Saini, Arzan Nagwaswalla and Saurabh Kumar are the standby players named by the selectors. 

The first of three Tests starts at SuperSport Park in Centurion on 26 December.

Test Squads

South Africa

Dean Elgar (captain, Titans), Temba Bavuma (vice-captain, Lions), Quinton de Kock (wicketkeeper, Titans), Kagiso Rabada (Lions), Sarel Erwee (Dolphins), Beuran Hendricks (Western Province), George Linde (Western Province), Keshav Maharaj (Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Titans), Aiden Markram (Titans), Wiaan Mulder (Lions), Anrich Nortje (Warriors), Keegan Petersen (Dolphins), Rassie van der Dussen (Lions), Kyle Verreynne (Western Province), Marco Jansen (Warriors), Glenton Stuurman (Warriors), Prenelan Subrayen (Dolphins), Sisanda Magala (Lions), Ryan Rickelton (Lions), Duanne Olivier (Lions)

India

Virat Kohli (Captain), Rohit Sharma (vice-captain), KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), R Ashwin, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj

Standby Players: Navdeep Saini, Saurabh Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Arzan Nagwaswalla.

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