The India-New Zealand T20I series is all set to get underway on Wednesday (November 17) in Jaipur. The first of the three match series is grabbing eyeballs due to rising air pollution in the city. After the festival of Diwali concluded on November 7, Jaipur’s air pollution has risen considerably. On Saturday (November 13), it reported dismal AQI levels, with smog covering major parts of the city early morning on Monday (November 15).
India opener KL Rahul, however, is hopeful that the situation will ease out by the time players step on the park for the first T20I. “Actually, we haven’t stepped out yet. We just reached the stadium so I don’t know, I don’t have an answer to that. I am not carrying a meter with me in my hand to say how bad the pollution is. I am sure it won’t be that bad. We all are here to play cricket,” said Rahul before the Indian team’s first practice session on Monday.
India will begin the T20I series under new T20I skipper Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid. Ahead of the first game, the squad members completed the first training session after completing three days of quarantine. With BCCI selectors opting to rest senior players from the T20Is, it a great opportunity for young players, such as Ruturaj Gaikwad, Venkatesh Iyer and Harshal Patel, to prove their mettle.
The trio performed well in the 2021 edition Indian Premier League (IPL) for their respective teams. Meanwhile, New Zealand will have confidence and momentum after an astounding show in the 20-20 World Cup. Kane Williamson, however, won’t be part of the T20I series as he has opted for a break from T20Is to focus on the following Test series.