India vs Sri Lanka, 2nd T20I tip-off XI: Rahul Tripathi to debut or Washington Sundar in for Samson?

IND vs SL 2nd T20I Playing XI: Having taken a 1-0 lead in the three-match T20I series, Hardik Pandya-led India will look to take an unassailable lead against Sri Lanka in the bilateral by winning the 2nd T20I on Thursday, January 5 in Pune. Two runs separated India and Sri Lanka in Mumbai, with the major takeaway was the Indian captain stating, “I want to put this team in difficult situations because it will help us in big games. Bilaterals we are very good at and this is how we are going to challenge ourselves.”

Rahul Tripathi to replace Sanju Samson

Sanju Samson sustained a knee injury while training during the first T20I. Rahul Tripathi looks more likely the option India go for as a replacement in the playing XI. If he does, it will of course be his first T20I for India.

However, India can also bring in Washington Sundar and promote Deepak Hooda, who scored 41 in the last match, up the order. Sundar will also add to the team’s bowling options.

Arshdeep may have to wait further

Arshdeep Singh missed out on the first T20I following illness. With just 48 hours gap between matches and the ODIs still on the horizon, India may want to give the left-arm pacer further time before he returns on field.

Harshal Patel leaked runs once again towards the fag end of the innings. The right-armer conceded 16 runs in the penultimate over that took the game closer to Sri Lanka’s grasp than was expected. The second T20I may be another chance for him to prove his mettle in death overs.

Pitch report

Pune this time of the year is host to moderate temperature. The last game played at the MCA Stadium saw India score past 200 and defend it by relative ease than what Wankhede offers owing to dew in the second innings.

Predicted playing XI

India: Ishan Kishan (wk), Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya (c), Deepak Hooda, Axar Patel, Harshal Patel/Washington Sundar, Shivam Mavi, Yuzvendra Chahal, Umran Malik

Sri Lanka: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Mendis (wk), Dhananjaya de Silva, Charith Asalanka, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Dasun Shanaka (c), Wanindu Hasaranga, Chamika Karunaratne, Maheesh Theekshana, Kasun Rajitha, Dilshan Madushanka

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