Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to lay the foundation stone of the International Cricket Stadium in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi on Saturday afternoon.
Indian men’s cricket team head coach Ravi Shastri was feeling “great to get back to business” ahead of the full-fledged series against Australia, beginning November 27.
On Wednesday, Shastri tweeted photos of himself alongside Hardik Pandya, Shikhar Dhawan and Shardul Thakur and said: “Great to get back to business – with @hardikpandya7 @SDhawan25, @imShard, #TeamIndia #AUSvIND.”
Meanwhile, all the members of the Indian team in Australia tested negative for COVID-19 before beginning the outdoor training at the Down Under on Saturday Blacktown International Sports Park inside the Sydney Olympic Park.
The team had travelled to Australia directly from the United Arab Emirates, where they had participated in the recently-concluded Indian Premier League (IPL). The BCCI posted pictures of the outdoor training and a gym session on its twitter handle.
Even though the players are currently undergoing the mandatory quarantine, the local New South Wales government has given the team permission to train during the isolation period.
In order to tackle the pace and bounce on Australia pitches, KL Rahul was earlier seen practicing with a tennis ball.
In a video posted by BCCI, ace off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was seen hitting a tennis ball with a tennis racquet at Rahul in the nets. The top-order batsman was seen playing the pull shots to deliveries directed at his body and evading or guiding those that are slightly outside the off-stump. Ashwin ensured that the ball did not bounce before reaching Rahul.
India’s tour of Australia will kick off with the ODI series from November 27. It will be followed by the three-match T20I series from December 4 before the Virat Kohli-led team begins the title defence of the Border-Gavaskar trophy with the pink-ball Test in Adelaide from December 17.
The first Test at Adelaide will be India’s first day-nigt Test outside home soil. It will also be skipper Virat Kohli’s only appearance in all-whites in Australia this time as he would return to India on a paternity leave after the opener.
Kohli had already informed the BCCI about his wish to return to India to unite with his wife Anushka Sharma. They are expecting their first child in January next year.
The day-night Test will be followed by Tests at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (December 26), the Sydney Cricket Ground (January 7) and the Gabba (January 15).