Sai Sudharsan, Agarwal, Dhull in Rest of India for Irani Cup

Irani Cup
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Irani Cup: Hanuma Vihari has been appointed as the captain of the Rest of India (ROI) team for the upcoming Irani Cup match against the Ranji champions, Saurashtra, which is scheduled to commence on October 1 in Rajkot.

Vihari, who led South Zone to victory in the Duleep Trophy earlier this year, will have several familiar faces from that successful squad joining him in the ROI team. These include batsmen Mayank Agarwal, B Sai Sudharsan, and fast bowler Vidwath Kaverappa. KS Bharat is likely to assume the role of the primary wicketkeeper, with Dhruv Jurel as the backup.

Abhimanyu Easwaran, who was the leading run-scorer in the previous Ranji season with 798 runs, will not be able to participate as he is currently recovering from typhoid. Another surprising omission is Kerala all-rounder Jalaj Saxena, who topped the wicket-taking charts with 50 wickets.

Given that several India A players are currently away representing the national team at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, the selectors have decided to include promising young batsmen Yash Dhull and Rohan Kunnummal in the ROI squad, despite their modest performances in the Ranji Trophy this season. Vihari, who had a mixed season himself with 490 runs in 14 innings for Andhra, will lead the team, indicating his continued presence in the national team’s backup plans.

Sarfaraz Khan, who had a less-than-ideal start to the season with scores of 0, 6, 0, and 48 in the Duleep Trophy, will have an opportunity to make amends and is expected to feature in the middle order.

The composition of the playing XI will provide insight into the role Mumbai’s Sarfaraz Khan might play in the future, as he has been a prolific No. 5 batsman for Mumbai in the past few seasons. Additionally, Sai Sudharsan, fresh off a successful county stint with Surrey, is likely to be part of the squad.

In terms of bowling, ROI will rely on Navdeep Saini as the spearhead, while Vidwath Kaverappa from Karnataka, who had a strong Duleep Trophy and an impressive 30 wickets in the Ranji season, is expected to share the new ball. Saurabh Kumar from Uttar Pradesh and Shams Mulani, the second-highest wicket-taker in the 2022-23 Ranji Trophy with 46 scalps, will lead the spin department, with Delhi’s Pulkit Narang also securing a place. Left-arm pacer Yash Dayal adds variety to the pace attack and could feature as the third seamer.

Bengal’s pace leader Akash Deep is in the squad but won’t participate in the match as he is with the Indian squad at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, having been called up as a late replacement for the injured Shivam Mavi.

On the other side, hosts Saurashtra have named a strong squad featuring their regular players, including Cheteshwar Pujara and Jaydev Unadkat, who have been active in county championship cricket in England. Sheldon Jackson, at 37, continues to be a key player in the middle order alongside Pujara and Arpit Vasavada, the second-highest run-scorer in the previous Ranji season.

Saurashtra earned the opportunity to play in the Irani Cup by winning their second Ranji Trophy title earlier this year against Bengal.

Here is the squad list for both teams:

Rest of India:

  • Hanuma Vihari (captain)
  • K S Bharat
  • Mayank Agarwal
  • Yash Dhull
  • Shams Mulani
  • Sai Sudarshan
  • Sarfaraz Khan
  • Pulkit Narang
  • Saurabh Kumar
  • Yash Dayal
  • Navdeep Saini
  • Vidwath Kaverappa
  • Akash Deep
  • Rohan Kunnummal
  • Dhruv Jurel


  • Jaydev Unadkat (captain)
  • Cheteshwar Pujara
  • Sheldon Jackson
  • Arpit Vasavada
  • Harvik Desai
  • Dharmendrasinh Jadeja
  • Prerak Mankad
  • Chirag Jani
  • Jay Gohil
  • Parth Bhut
  • Vishvarajsinh Jadeja
  • Samarth Vyas
  • Yuvrajsinh Dodiya
  • Kushang Patel
  • Snell Patel
  • Devang Karamta.

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