Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Following his superb performance in this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL), the national selectors have decided to reward opening batsman Gautam Gambhir by including him in India’s Test squad for their upcoming tour of England.
One major surprise was the exclusion of veteran pace bowler Zaheer Khan, while the other big talking point was the inclusion of Rajasthan fast bowler Pankaj Singh.
Khan has been struggling with injuries over the past few months and has gradually fallen off the national selectors’ radar.
However, it is still unclear whether Khan was not included in the squad as a result of his injury woes or whether he was simply dropped.
Meanwhile, Singh is one of six pace bowlers in the 18-man squad and was finally rewarded for years of hard work and impressive performances. He made a strong case for himself during the 2013-14 Ranji Trophy season when he finished with 39 wickets at a brilliant average of 22.46.
This tour will be a huge challenge for India as they have not played a five-Test series since 2002. In addition to this, they have also not won a Test series abroad in more than three years.
Squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Gautam Gambhir, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ishwar Pandey, Ishant Sharma, Stuart Binny, Varun Aaron, Wriddhiman Saha, Pankaj Singh