Pacer S Sreesanth has been included in Kerala’s Ranji Trophy Squad as they announced a 20-member squad for India’s premier first-class tournament. 33-year old batsman Sachin Baby has been captain of the team while the wicketkeeper Vishnu Vinod was named his deputy for the tournament.
Notable that Ranji Trophy is making the return in India‘s domestic cricket calendar. It was cancelled last season and even in this season it was originally scheduled to start on January 13 but it was postponed due to another covid outbreak.
Sreesanth last time played a first-class game in 2013
Now Kerala has been placed in Group A along with Meghalaya, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh as they will play their games in Rajkot. Last time in 2019-20, they couldn’t go past the league stage of the tournament.
They will miss the services of Sanju Samson who is currently at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru as he is recovering from an injury. He will join the squad once he gets fit.
Meanwhile, Sreesanth who last played a first-class game in 2013, would make a return in the longer format. Last year he returned with decent numbers in Vijay Hazare Trophy as he picked a fifer and 4-fer. He also represented Kerala in the Syed Mushtaq Ali. He played 27 Tests, 53 ODIs, and 10 T20Is for India before he was banned due to a spot-fixing case with Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2013.
Interestingly the wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammed Azharuddeen who scored a T20 hundred last season for Kerala missed out from the squad. He was also picked by RCB in the 2021 auction. Anand Krishnan, Fanoos F, Varun Nayanar, and Eden Apple Tom are some of the new faces in the squad.
Notable that the league stage of the tournament will finish before the IPL while knockout games will be played in May-June.
Kerala squad: Sachin Baby (C), Vishnu Vinod (VC & WK), Anand Krishnan, Rohan Kunnumel, Vatsal Govind, Rahul P, Salman Nizar, Jalaj Saxena, Sijomon Joseph, Akshay KC, Mithun S, Basil NP, Nideesh MD, Manu Krishnan, Basil Thampi, Fanoos F, Sreesanth S, Varun Nayanar, Vinoop Manoharan, Eden Apple Tom