India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni will miss the first cricket Test against Australia due to a thumb injury though he took part in the training session on Sunday, while Virat Kohli has confirmed that he will lead India team at the Commonwealth Bank opening match.
The match to be held on Tuesday as part of the four-Test series at the Adelaide Oval in Australia. “Yes, I will be leading tomorrow,” Kohli told Cricket Australia (CA) website. “We expect (Dhoni) to be 100 percent fit in the next few days. We want him to be 100 percent before he plays a game.”
Meanwhile, Australia captain Michael Clarke has been declared fit and will play the opening Test as his hamstring injury has been healed.
Australia team will have paceman Josh Hazlewood to be 12th man and Shaun Marsh overlooked, while the same 12 will play for the second Test in Brisbane, beginning December 17. In a touching gesture, the late Phillip Hughes has been named Australia’s ’13th man’.
The inclusion of Clarke was welcomed by Mitchell Johnson. “It’s a huge boost to have him back in and playing for us and with his captaincy,” Johnson told reporters on Monday. “He is a strong leader and has always been an aggressive leader … he just has something about him when he’s out there as captain.”
Kohli said his team would keep the fire on and backed his pacemen to cause Australia’s batsmen some trouble. On Mitchell Johnson, who claimed 37 wickets in the 2013-14 Ashes series, Kohli said: “There’s nothing very special about a particular individual or a few individuals.”
Kohli attended Phillip Hughes’s funeral last Wednesday and suggested the 25-year-old’s death had mentally hit his squad hard. But the middle-order batsman said they had found a way to quickly focus on training.