In preparation for India's Test match against England, four players from the Indian camp will play for Leicestershire County Cricket Club. In the last week, Leicestershire's home ground, Uptonsteel County Ground, has been used as India's training ground. The warm-up game commences on Thursday, June 23.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have approved allowing four Indian players to play for Leicestershire so everyone from the camp can play.
The four players who will play for Leicestershire are batsman Cheteshwar Pujara, wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant, and fast bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Prasidh Krishna.
"LCCC, BCCI and the ECB have all agreed to allow the four players from the visiting camp to be part of the Running Foxes side, in order to allow all members of the travelling party to participate in the fixture (subject to fitness)," said the club in a statement.
They added, "The match will be played with 13 players per side to provide further flexibility and help manage bowling workloads".
England vs India Test match
July 1 will mark the beginning of the first Test match between India and England. The game will be considered the fifth of last year's series. The game was called off at that time due to an outbreak of COVID-19 within the Indian camp.
As India led England 2-1, a series of COVID-19 cases hit their contingent before the fifth Test in Manchester began. As India was already slated to play white-ball fixtures, the BCCI and ECB mutually agreed to reschedule the fifth Test in 2022.
Both teams have changed a lot since last year's postponement. Rohit Sharma took over as India's captain after Virat Kohli stepped down earlier this year. Reports have surfaced that Kohli was infected with the COVID-19 virus, but a team insider denied the claims. England's all-rounder Ben Stokes has been appointed captain following Joe Root's dismissal.
The head coaches of both teams have also changed. As a result of Ravi Shastri's retirement last year, Rahul Dravid took over as India's coach. In the wake of last month's dismissal of Chris Silverwood, Brendon McCullum has been appointed as England's Test coach.
Uptonsteel County Ground will host India's warm-up game against Leicestershire before the fifth and final Test against England. The county team will feature four Indian players before India plays their first Test.
"Leicestershire CCC will welcome members from the India touring party into their side for tomorrow's four-day tour match at Uptonsteel County Ground. India superstars Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, Jasprit Bumrah and Prasidh Krishna, will all team up with the Leicestershire squad, captained by opening batsman Sam Evans," the club said.