Virat Kohli's Team India will continue to extend their dominant run at home when they take on Sri Lanka in the upcoming three-match Test series, starting November 16 at Eden Gardens, Kolkata.
After having beaten the likes of South Africa, New Zealand, England and Australia at home in the recent past, the hosts are unlikely to be troubled by Dinesh Chandimal's team, which was crushed 3-0 in July-August at its own backyard. However, India are unlikely to decrease their intensity as they will look to use the upcoming three-match rubber as tune-up for their tour to South Africa next year.
Having said that, Sri Lanka will be looking to put up a better fight this time around and their 2-0 series win over Pakistan in the UAE last month should serve as a big boost ahead of what is expected to be a tough assignment in India.
India (1st and 2nd Tests only)
Virat Kohli (c), Murali Vijay, Lokesh Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma
The hosts have assembled a full-strength squad, led by Kohli, who was initially expected to be rested for the upcoming series. However, Hardik Pandya has been rested and the all-rounder revealed he had asked for it after what has been a gruelling season of cricket for the Indian stars.
Focus will also be on R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja as both the finger-spinners have made their comebacks after not being part of India's recent limited-overs assignments against Australia and New Zealand.
It will also be interesting to see India's opening combination as Test specialist Murali Vijay, who last played for the national side during the four-Test series against Australia in February-March, returns after recovering from injury. It is now a three-way battle between the Tamil Nadu batsman, KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan for the opening spot.
Dinesh Chandimal (c), Dimuth Karunaratne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Sadeera Samarawickrama (wk), Angelo Mathews, Lahiru Thirimanne, Rangana Herath, Suranga Lakmal, Dilruwan Perera, Lahiru Gamage, Lakshan Sandakan, Vishwa Fernando, Dasun Shanaka, Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Roshen Silva
Sri Lanka, on the other hand, have made a lot of changes to the team that went down against India earlier this year. While Rangana Herath is likely to lead their challenge, the likes of Dimuth Karunaratne, Chandimal and Dilruwan Perera, who had a good outing in the UAE, need to step up and contribute for the team once again if they are to stand a chance of testing Kohli's men.
|1st Test||November 16 - 20||9:30am IST||Eden Gardens, Kolkata|
|2nd Test||November 24 - 28||9:30am IST||Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur|
|3rd Test||December 2 - 6||9:30am IST||Feroz Shah Kotla, New Delhi|
Global TV listings
India: Star Sports 1/3
Sri Lanka: Star Sports
UK: Sky Sports Cricket
US: Willow TV