The left-arm off-spinner was all set to make his Test debut in the first encounter against England but suffered a knee injury before the game. However, it looks like he has now recovered.
The 27-year-old was seen bowling a few deliveries to Indian skipper Virat Kohli. Later, he faced some quick balls from the pacers and looked a bit rusty to start with.
However, he gradually began to time the ball well. Here is a video of the same:
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 11, 2021
Kohli had said in a video conference that Axar Patel was named in Team India’s 18-man squad for the first two Tests against England because of all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja’s absence.
The 27-year-old is also an all-rounder and could provide that balance for the hosts to play five bowlers as well as have depth in their batting.
Axar Patel has a fine first-class record, having scored 1665 runs in 39 games at a healthy average of 35.42, including 13 fifties and a hundred.
He has also picked up 134 wickets in the same span. Unfortunately, his injury meant that Team India had to play Washington Sundar because of his all-round abilities.
With Axar Patel fit again, will Virat Kohli show confidence in Kuldeep Yadav?
— The Field (@thefield_in) February 11, 2021
With Ravichandran Ashwin and Washington Sundar in the side, Kuldeep Yadav had to miss out as he spun the ball into the right-hander as well. Instead, Team India went with the left-arm off-spin of Shahbaz Nadeem.
Nadeem was highly ineffective and looks set to be dropped for the second Test. However, it remains to be seen whether Axar Patel will replace the Jharkhand spinner or 21-year-old Sundar to bring Kuldeep into the scheme of things.
Sundar’s exclusion will be harsh on the youngster as he scored an unbeaten 85 in the first innings of the Chennai Test.
Team India’s management have a lot of questions and less than a couple of days to find the right combination for the second Test.