Nagpur: India began training ahead of the Border Gavaskar Trophy 2023 against Australia in Nagpur on Friday.
The Men in Blue will face a tough test from Australia, who is the number one ranked Test side. The first Test will be played in Nagpur between February 9 and 13. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Friday shared pictures of Team India's training session on Twitter.
On Friday, the likes of captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul were pictured training at the nets.
Indian skipper looked to be in good touch during a net session, while Kohli and opener KL Rahul also enjoyed a fruitful net session. The practice session was an intense one as both bowlers and batters worked hard to take their skills to the highest level before their opening Test against Australia.
Australia and India, currently ranked No.1 and 2 respectively in both the ICC Men's Test Team Rankings and the ongoing ICC World Test Championship 2023 cycle, will meet in a four-match Test series in India. The opening Test will be played in Nagpur between February 9 and 13.
India and Australia have played in 27 Test series since their first meeting in 1947-48. Australia lead the way with 12 series wins to India's 10, while five series have been drawn.
As part of the preparation, the Australian team has hired Maheesh Pithiya a 21-year-old spinner who bears an eerie likeness to Ravichandran Ashwin. Even as Pithiya's career developed to see him make his first-class debut for Baroda in December, his approach has stayed uncannily similar to Ashwin's, who will be one of Australia's biggest bowling threats during the four-Test series, which begins next week in Nagpur.
India are the current holder of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after winning the series in Australia in 2020-21.
Australia squad: Pat Cummins (c), Ashton Agar, Scott Boland, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Lance Morris, Todd Murphy, Matthew Renshaw, Steve Smith (vc), Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson and David Warner.
India squad: (for the first two Tests) Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul (vc), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KS Bharat, Ishan Kishan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat and Suryakumar Yadav. (