Impressive performers in IPL 2021, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Venkatesh Iyer, Harshal Patel, and Avesh Khan have all been named in a refreshed 16-man India T20I squad that will take on New Zealand in a three-match series starting on November 17. The Chetan Sharma-led senior selection committee also named Rohit Shama as the captain of the squad, taking over from Virat Kohli, while KL Rahul is the designated vice-captain.
Notable absentees in the squad include multi-format regulars Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Ravindra Jadeja, while Hardik Pandya, who has had issues with his bowling fitness, has also not been picked. Shardul Thakur, Varun Chakravarthy and Rahul Chahar, who were part of the 15-member T20 World Cup squad, are the others to miss out.
Shreyas Iyer and Deepak Chahar, who were all part of the travelling reserves at the T20 World Cup, have been included in this squad, along with Axar Patel. Meanwhile, Yzvendra Chahal and Mohammed Siraj have also returned to the side.
India’s T20I squad:Rohit Sharma (Captain), KL Rahul (Vice-Captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Venkatesh Iyer, Yuzvendra Chahal, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Harshal Patel, Mohd. Siraj
Among those picked for their IPL 2021 cred, orange-cap winner Gaikwad played two T20Is for India on the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year. Avesh, Venkatesh and Harshal, meanwhile, were part of the India bubble at the World Cup and helped assist the team in its preparations.
The three T20Is will be played in Jaipur (November 17), Ranchi (November 19) and Kolkata (November 21). The squad for the two subsequent Tests, at Kanpur (November 25-29) and Mumbai (December 3-7), will be announced later.
Umran Malik, Devdutt Padikkal in India ‘A’ squad for South Africa tour
Meanwhile, Jammu & Kashmir fast bowler Umran Malik and Karnataka opener Devdutt Padikkal have been picked in the India A squad that will be on a shadow tour of South Africa just before the senior team. The 14-member team, led by Priyank Panchal, is scheduled to play three four-day games in Bloemfontein, starting on November 23. Uttar Pradesh’s Upendra Yadav is picked as the only wicketkeeper in the side.
India A Squad: Priyank Panchal (Captain), Prithvi Shaw, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Devdutt Padikkal, Sarfaraz Khan, Baba Aparajith, Upendra Yadav (wicket-keeper), K Gowtham, Rahul Chahar, Saurabh Kumar, Navdeep Saini, Umran Malik, Ishan Porel, Arzan Nagwaswalla