Left-arm spinner Axar Patel may get the nod ahead of chinaman spinner Kuldeep Yadav for the third Test against Sri Lanka at Pallekelle which will commence on Saturday. Patel may get the priority owing to his unconventional action that is expected to produce sharp turn and bounce on the wicket.
Ravindra Jadeja, the world No. 1 Test bowler, and all-rounder will not be taking part in the third and final Test of the series against Sri Lanka after he accumulated six demerit points in a 24-year month which led to a one-match suspension. Following Jadeja's ban, Axar Patel was chosen as Kuldeep Yadav's backup but according to reports in the TOI, the 23-year old may be chosen ahead of Yadav and could make a debut for India in the all-whites.
Patel is currently part of the India A team that defeated hosts South Africa by 7-wickets in the final yesterday to clinch the tri-series. The 23-year old played a pivotal role in India A's successful campaign in the Rainbow nation scalping six wickets at 15.50, with a best of 3/33 against Afghanistan A.
Patel has featured in 30 One-day Internationals and seven Twenty20 Internationals for India and played his last international game in the fifth ODI against New Zealand in Vizag on October 29. The Gujarat bowler has taken 35 wickets in ODIs at an average of 30.20 while scalping seven wickets in the T20Is. The Indian management is thinking of choosing Patel ahead of Yadav because it is expected that the 23-year old can generate sharp turn and bounce on the Pallekelle wicket apart from playing a cameo with the bat.
"Axar is someone who can do a Jadeja with the bat too, though he averages just 14.16 and has the highest score of 38 in ODIs. The left-hander, though, has some decent knocks in domestic cricket, averaging 48.45 after 23 games in first-class cricket, with 10 fifties and a hundred, besides taking 79 wickets. If India stick to playing two spinners in Pallekele, something which they have to