Harsha Bhogle selects Virat to lead his 2016 Test XI

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Harsha Bhogle selects Virat to lead his 2016 Test XI

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SportsCafe Desk

01/02/2017

Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli has been chosen as the skipper of the Best Test XI of 2016 by famous cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle. Ravichandran Ashwin is the only other Indian player alongside Virat Kohli in the team, in which Harsha left out David Warner in favor of Kraigg Brathwaite.

Kohli’s sublime form has seen him rack up a whopping 1215 runs from 12 matches in 2016 at an average of 75.93. The talismanic batsman, in the meantime, led India in 2016 to an unbeaten streak all through by not losing a single Test. While Kohli was excluded from the Test XI of ICC due to a controversial deadline, Harsha didn’t hesitate to pick Virat to lead the side. 

In a special program for Cricbuzz, Harsha defied the monotony of picking David Warner as an opener, and rather surprisingly went with West Indies opener Kraigg Brathwaite, who scored 613 runs from eight Tests at an average of 55.72. When the entire West Indian team were struggling to face Pakistan in UAE last year, Brathwaite showed exemplary skill to counter the Pakistani pacers.

Harsha chose Pakistani batsman Azhar Ali as the other opener in the squad, whereas Joe Root has been chosen to follow at No.3. Root had capped off a wonderful year with the bat where he topped the run-charts, scoring 1477 runs from 17 Tests. 

Skipper Virat Kohli follows at the crucial No.4 position. Australian skipper Steve Smith, who also had a wonderful year with the bat, scoring 1079 runs at an average of 71.93 has been chosen as the No.5 of the team.

What a year Ben Stokes had! He averaged 45 with the bat and 33 wickets in 2016. And how could Harsha miss him from the squad? Ben Stokes got a go at the No.6 position as the pace-bowling all-rounder of the team. Stokes’ compatriot Jonny Bairstow captivated all and sundry with his sensational display- both in front and behind the stumps. Bairstow has been chosen as the wicket-keeper of the side.

Harsha decided to go with two spinners in the form of Ravichandran Ashwin and Sri Lankan veteran Rangana Herath, who defied age to pick wickets at will. While Ashwin and Herath handle the spin department, Harsha picked two potent bowlers in the form of Australian pace spearhead Mitchel Starc and South Africa sensation Kagiso Rabada.

A dream team indeed! 

Pick your best pacers in Tests of 2016! (Pick 3 out of 6)
Dale Steyn
Josh Hazlewood
James Anderson
Stuart Broad
Mitchell Starc
Vernon Philander
Pick your best pacers in ODI/T20 of 2016! (Pick 3 out of 6)
Bumrah
Rabada
Boult
K.J. Abbott
Mustafizur Rahman
M.A. Starc

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