India Announce T20I Squad For Windies And Australia Series, MS Dhoni Misses Out
India have not included veteran wicketkeeper-batsman MS Dhoni in their T20I squad for the series against Windies and Australia. In Dhoni’s absence, the onus has been put on youngster Rishabh Pant and experienced Dinesh Karthik.
The axing comes at a time when Dhoni has failed to bat as per his reputation. The 37-year old, who led India to the World T20 title in 2007, has been facing the heat for quite some time now. Dhoni has not only struggled in T20Is but also in ODIs. He played two uncharacteristic innings in England and was even booed at Lord’s. His performance was below par in the Asia Cup too.
Well, the selectors naming Pant and Karthik makes it pretty clear that they are looking at other alternatives now. Chief selector MSK Prasad, however, defended the decision and said that the selectors took the decision to find a suitable number two for Dhoni.
“The T20Is here and in Australia, he [Dhoni] is not going to play, because we are also looking at a second wicketkeeper. That will be between Rishabh and Dinesh Karthik. So they will be getting a chance to keep and bat,” Prasad said.
In other major decision, Virat Kohli has been rested for the series against Windies at home. In his absence, Rohit Sharma will lead the side. Kohli, however, will return to lead the team during the series against Australia.
Spinner Shahbaz Nadeem has also received his maiden India call for the Windies series. The left-arm spinner was the highest wicket-taker in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. The Jharkhand star had picked up 24 wickets at an average of 13.04 and an economy of 3.86. However, he has not found a spot in the team for the Australia tour.
The players who were a part of India’s last T20I assignment but are not in the two recent squads are Suresh Raina, Deepak Chahar , Siddarth Kaul and Hardik Pandya. While the first three have been dropped on the basis of their form, Pandya has not made it to the squad because of a back injury.
India have also recalled Shreyas Iyer after his impressive display in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. The Mumbai star scored 373 runs in six innings at an average of 93.25, including two hundreds and two fifties.
India will begin the series against Windies on November 4 in Kolkata. Both the teams will then move to Lucknow and Chennai for the remaining two games on November 6 and November 11 respectively.
India’s tour of Australia gets underway with the first T20I to be played in Brisbane on November 21.
India squad for West Indies T20Is:
Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Dinesh Karthik, Manish Pandey, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (wk), Krunal Pandya, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Khaleel Ahmed, Umesh Yadav, Shahbaz Nadeem
India squad for Australia T20Is:
Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik, Rishabh Pant (wk), Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar, Krunal Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed
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