Monday, October 31, 2011

Indian selectors announce 15-man squad for the first Test against West Indies

Indian selectors announced a 15-man squad against West Indies for the first Test of the 3-match Test series that is scheduled to kick off on November 6 at Feroz Shah Kotla in New Delhi.

India’s most experienced spinner, Harbhajan Singh, has been dropped from the test squad due to his bad form. He has been going through a very bad time. He was also excluded from the 5-match ODI series against England at home.

Selectors named three spinners- Pragyan Ojha, Ravichandran Ashwin and Rahul Sharma, for the series. Ravichandran Ashwin has been a regular face of India’s ODI side but he is yet to make his debut in the oldest format of cricket game.

Another uncapped player is Rahul Sharma whose inclusion is somewhat considered to be surprising. He was also included in the ODI squad. He has caught the attention of selectors with his performance in the Indian Premier League. He plays for Punjab in the Ranji Trophy and Pune Warriors in the IPL. So far he has played 10 First-class games and got 18 wickets.

Indian batting line up will be stronger with the inclusion of Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh, who have returned from injury.

Suresh Raina has been dropped from the squad. The reason of his exclusion was his bad form in England. He has been replaced by Virat Kohli. Virat Kohli’s eye-catching performance against England in the ODIs helped him to get a place in the squad.

Pace attack lead by Ishant Sharma is the comprising of Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron. Both bowlers have played in ODI format and they are waiting to make their debut in Test. Ajinkya Rahane is another player who is yet to play any Test match.

Indian captain, MS Dhoni, was supposed to be rested for the series given India’s grueling touring schedule. At the end, he was not given the break.

Indian Squad for the first Test against West Indies: MS Dhoni (captain), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, R Ashwin, Pragyan Ojha, Rahul Sharma, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron.