Team India may have entered into the Twenty-20 tri-series, involving Bangladesh and Sri Lanka as favourites but stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma is reluctant to accept the tag.
While India are currently ranked at No. 3 spot in ICC T20I rankings, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are placed at No. 8 and 10 respectively. Nonetheless, the Men in Blue will play in the tournament without the services of their top players namely – Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah and Kuldeep Yadav.
"We won't label ourselves as favourites. The T20 format is unpredictable and you got to be on the money at all times. Both our oppositions are strong and we look forward to a good contest," Rohit said while addressing the media on the eve of their first match against hosts Sri Lanka in Colombo.
The India captain further went on to say that he is hopeful of some stellar performances from the young guns.
"We are happy to be here and expect to play some good cricket in the Nidahas Trophy. It is an honour for me to lead the side and it is going to be no different in this series. I am excited to see how this young team performs," he added.
Prior to India’s recently concluded South Africa tour, Rohit had led the national limited-overs team against Sri Lanka at home in the absence of Virat Kohli. Sharma had led the team to victories in both the ODI and T20I series.
The Twenty-20 tri-series is being played to celebrate 70 years of Sri Lankan independence and all the games of the series will be played at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo.
Team India squad for Nidahas Trophy:
Rohit Sharma (Capt), Shikhar Dhawan (vc), KL Rahul, Suresh Raina, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Deepak Hooda, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Vijay Shankar, Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat, Mohammad Siraj, Rishabh Pant (wk).
Nidahas Trophy Schedule:
March 06, Sri Lanka vs India, 1st Match – Colombo
March 08, Bangladesh vs India, 2nd Match – Colombo
March 10, Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh, 3rd Match – Colombo
March 12, Sri Lanka vs India, 4th Match – Colombo
March 14, Bangladesh vs India, 5th Match – Colombo
March 16, Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh, 6th Match – Colombo
March 18, TBC vs TBC, Final – Colombo