India vs New Zealand: Squads on Sunday, Kohli & Co leave on January 20
New Delhi, Jan 11: The Indian teams for the New Zealand tour will be picked in Mumbai on Sunday and the T20I team will leave for New Zealand on January 20, a day after the final ODI between India and Australia at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on January 19. Virat Kohli and boys will play five T20 Internationals, three ODIs and two Test matches against the Black Caps.
Speaking to IANS, sources in the know of developments said that while the squads will be named on Sunday, the boys will leave immediately after the third ODI between India and Australia in the Garden City.
"The selectors will name the squads on Sunday and the T20 team will be leaving the day after the third ODI game between India and Australia. They will fly from Bengaluru itself as it makes more sense logistically. No point in the team dispersing after the Australia game and then regrouping again and heading to New Zealand," the source said.
It is believed that Hardik Pandya will return to the Indian team for the T20I series after having undergone rehabilitation for the back surgery he underwent in October. Pandya has already been named in the India 'A' team which is playing a shadow tour - now the norm with the Indian team's planning process whenever the senior team tours a country.
Speaking to IANS after he started his rehab, Pandya had hinted that he was looking at the New Zealand tour to make a comeback into the national team with an eye on the World T20 that will be played at the end of the year in Australia.
"I will be coming back before the New Zealand series, mid-way actually. That was the plan that I play some international games, the IPL and then the World T20. The biggest concern was the World T20 which touch wood is now in place.
"I was managing the back, tried everything possible not to get into surgery or anything. After trying everything, we came to the conclusion that it wasn't working. I noticed that I was not able to give my 100 per cent and that meant I was not doing justice to myself and the team. That is when I decided to go for the surgery," he had explained.