Finally, Team India decided to drop KL Rahul from their Test XI and replaced him with Shubman Gill for the third Test against Australia, that started on Wednesday in Indore.
KL Rahul had been going through a lean patch in Test cricket, averaging only 15 since that start of 2022. In 3 innings of the first two Tests of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2023, he managed scores of 20, 17, and 1.
There had been a huge furor on social media regarding Rahul’s persistent selection despite his poor form in Test cricket in the past year while Shubman Gill had been kept on the bench in the first two Tests, both of which India won.
Gill had hit his maiden Test century in Bangladesh in December, and then hit three centuries and a double-century in his last 7 limited-overs internationals.
Shubman Gill made his Test debut on the 2020/21 Australia tour
In 13 Tests, he averages 32 with 1 century and 4 half-century, including one in the historic Gabba victory.
While on the eve of the Indore Test, skipper Rohit Sharma had said that Rahul being not named the vice-captain didn’t hint anything – it did, as everyone anticipated Rahul to be dropped from the side once he was sacked as the vice-captain. And that happened: at the toss, after Sharma decided to bat first in the Holkar Cricket Stadium, he declared that Rahul has been replaced with Gill.
Keeping in mind the WTC final in June, which India are likely to make, they will now give Gill a couple of Tests to get into the Test groove.
Fans on Twitter were happy as a clam with India’s decision to bring in Gill for Rahul.
There were some hilarious memes (ft. Venkatesh Prasad) on this:
Shubman Gill replaces KL Rahul in 3rd tes
Venkatesh Prasad: pic.twitter.com/49PRwz6l1X
— Pulkit🇮🇳 (@pulkit5Dx) March 1, 2023
Justice for KL Rahul. pic.twitter.com/QMyW71bhJg
— Aditya Saha (@Adityakrsaha) March 1, 2023
Shubman Gill replaced KL Rahul from playing 11. #INDvAUS #KLRahul pic.twitter.com/rjRRYkyoLE
— Prayag (@theprayagtiwari) March 1, 2023
Suno KL Rahul dropped from the playing XI.#BGT2023 pic.twitter.com/dMABS4LBnT
— Mr. A🏏 (@cricdrugs) March 1, 2023
can’t believe they dropped kl rahul just because some dumbfucks kept tweeting about him
— vishal dayama (@VishalDayama) March 1, 2023
Finally KL Rahul dropped 😐
Venkatesh Prasad right now :#INDvAUS #IndvsAus #BGT2023 #ViratKohli pic.twitter.com/anRzb8ibc8
— Yogi Says (@imyogi_26) March 1, 2023
Scenes after KL Rahul dropped from team#INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/4cCvvtodg0
— Anoop 🇮🇳 (@ianooop) March 1, 2023
Venkatesh Prasad after knowing that KL Rahul was dropped in today's match pic.twitter.com/ULQSQX8fCs
— ಭಲೇ ಬಸವ (@Basavachethanah) March 1, 2023
Meanwhile Suniel Shetty and KL Rahul pic.twitter.com/1MDYVZ7oPx
— yaarivanu_unknownu (@memesmaadonu) March 1, 2023
Shubman Gill replaces KL Rahul in 3rd test….
Venkatesh Prasad & Memers : pic.twitter.com/wbdfZ009SK
— UmdarTamker (@UmdarTamker) March 1, 2023
After making a strong comeback, KL Rahul will be like pic.twitter.com/p5LrrjsxZC
— Shubham (@shubhamg23) March 1, 2023
KL Rahul in, Shubhman Gill Out.
Sunil Shetty on the way…💣#INDvAUS #KLRahul #ViratKohli #INDvsAUS pic.twitter.com/LqYqbdmQ9a
— Yogi Says (@imyogi_26) March 1, 2023
*KL Rahul dropped from the team*
Venkatesh Prasad and whole gang rn~ #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/inoAeUoh3W
— S. (@highonnweed) March 1, 2023
Shubman Gill playing in the third test match replacing KL Rahul
Venkatesh Prasad: pic.twitter.com/u56bAp6tns
— Sajcasm (@sajcasm_) March 1, 2023
India also gave rest to Shami with Umesh Yadav coming in. For Australia, there were two changes: Mitchell Starc and Cameron Green were fit and in the line-up, replacing Cummins, who had gone home to take care of his ill mother, and Warner, who has an elbow injury. Steve Smith is the captain for the Indore Test.
Australia (Playing XI): Usman Khawaja, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith(c), Peter Handscomb, Cameron Green, Alex Carey(w), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Todd Murphy, Matthew Kuhnemann
India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma(c), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ravindra Jadeja, Srikar Bharat(w), Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj