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Full strength squad likely for South Africa T20s; fresh faces to get a go against Ireland


CHENNAI: On a day when South Africa named a full-strength squad for their upcoming five-match T20I series in India, the BCCI too is planning to name a team with all the regulars, unless any player requests otherwise. 

As things stand, it is understood that none of the players have asked for a rest as India also believes this series is important in the bigger scheme of things.

“If any player request for rest, he would be granted, else, the selectors would be picking up a full-strength squad. With the West Indies tour following the UK tour, players will be rotated. It would be premature to pick young players who have done well in the IPL for the national team without testing them in exposure trips,” a source familiar with the developments said.

That said, some of the all-format players will not be available for the two T20Is against Ireland as they have to prepare for the one-off Test against England starting on July 1 in Birmingham. 

With the players short on red-ball practice, the team is scheduled to play a warm-up fixture against Leicester before the Test match. 

Similarly, they are also set to play a couple of white-ball matches against County sides after the completion of the T20Is against Ireland on June 26 and 28 in Dublin.

With a cramped calendar ahead of them and concerns over workload, the BCCI is scheduled to meet the selectors and the captain next week ahead of the selection committee meeting. 

Last week, head coach, Rahul Dravid, and National Cricket Academy head, VVS Laxman, were in Mumbai and it is understood they discussed about the workload management and the roadmap for the team till the T20 World Cup.

It is understood that for the tour of Ireland and for the two white-ball matches against County teams ahead of the limited-overs series, Laxman or Hrishikesh Kanitkar will be in charge of the team with a separate support staff to assist.

The selectors will pick the squad for both the South Africa series and tour of UK sometime next week.