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Asia Cup 2018: Kohli Rested; Rayudu, Pandey, Jadhav Return

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: September 1, 2018, 5:06 PM IST

Rohit Sharma will lead India in the absence of Virat Kohli (rested) in the upcoming Asia Cup, the Board of Control for Cricket in India announced on Saturday.

The MSK Prasad-led selection committee have recalled Kedar Jadhav, Ambati Rayudu and Manish Pandey to the One-Day International setup, while left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed is the only new face in the 16-man squad that will travel to the United Arab Emirates for the six-team 50-over tournament, getting underway from September 15.

Meanwhile, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who was ruled out of the ongoing Test series in England, has fully recovered from his lower back injury and been included in the squad. Bhuvneshwar underwent rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore and featured in one of India A's fixtures in the recently concluded quadrangular series.

Suresh Raina, Shreyas Iyer, Umesh Yadav and Siddarth Kaul, who were part of the ODI side in England, are among the ones to miss out.

Both Pandey and Rayudu scored heavily in the quadrangular series. Pandey, who was dropped from the ODI side that played three games in England, didn't just lead India B to the title but also amassed 306 runs in four innings, without being dismissed even once.

After plundering 602 runs in the 2018 Indian Premier League (IPL), Rayudu was selected to play the ODIs against England in July but failed to clear the mandatory yo-yo fitness test. He cleared the test this month and was straightaway drafted to the India A squad. While his team (India A) failed to qualify for the final, Rayudu stood head and shoulders above the rest, finishing with 187 runs at 62.33.

Jadhav, who had been a regular in India's ODI team, suffered a grade 2 hamstring tear in the opening game of the 2018 IPL and was ruled out for the entire season, and India's tour of Ireland and England. The Indian middle order currently wears an iffy look and the selectors have gone back to the proven names to fill the holes ahead of the 2019 World Cup.

Khaleel, the 20-year-old fast bowler from Rajasthan, played one game for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the last season of IPL. He has been a regular in the 'A' side, and being a left-armer, will provide some versatility to the pace attack that will be led by Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar and Shardul Thakur. Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal will take care of the spin department, with Axar Patel as the backup.

Ther top-three will be formed by Rohit, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul, while the likes of MS Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik and Hardik Pandya will be expected to fire in the latter stages of the innings.

Despite scoring tons of runs across all the formats in the domestic circuit, Mayank Agarwal once again missed out.

Squad: Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan (vc), KL Rahul, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Khaleel Ahmed.

First Published: September 1, 2018, 1:29 PM IST
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