India's Potential team for the Second Test match: Permutations & Combinations

Second test between India and South Africa starts tomorrow at Pune. 

India is favourite to win the test and series here. Even after taking 1-0 lead in the series, Indian playing eleven needs to improve. India didn’t play a single left-handed batsman in the last test against South Africa. 

Rishabh Pant is a left handed batsman and is a quality player. It is the right time to groom him. He should be given a chance in home conditions. He is the future of Indian Cricket. After Ravindra Jadeja he can be our biggest asset. Being a left hander, Pant is more capable of taking on the two left-arm spinners which South Africa played in the first test. Wriddhiman Saha should be used as a reserve keeper because he lags behind Pant in sheer batting ability.

Ajinkya Rahane's performance is not up to mark for a long time now. The Mumbaikar is out of touch and it seems that he has kept his place in the team on just his past showings. He has been given enough opportunities despite poor performances. 

Now is the time to replace him with KL Rahul in middle order or some other player if team management had lost faith in Rahul. In this particular series India should opt for a fifth bowler. As Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin are performing well with bat too, we can accommodate a specialist bowler to easily knock off the twenty wickets required to win. 

In that case, Kuldeep Yadav can fill the fifth bowler's slot. Being a chinaman bowler, he will provide a X-factor in the bowling attack . Hanuma Vihari then can concentrate more on his batting. Vihari can be used as a part-time spinner outside subcontinent where it is difficult to accommodate two specialist spinners in the playing eleven depending upon wickets conditions there.

Rest of the team is performing well. Rohit, Mayank, Shami, Jadeja and Ashwin are in full form. Virat and Pujara are doing good. Ishant is the spearhead of bowling attack. Hanuma Vihari should be given some time. Other two got enough chances and need to be replaced. 

So India should go ahead with best options and combinations available to them as they already have upper hand in the series. Hope weather will be clear so that India can take an unassailable lead at Pune. Good luck team India. 

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