Image courtesy of: Zimbio
After nearly four years in exile, India spinner Amit Mishra has been recalled into the Test squad for the upcoming three-Test series against Sri Lanka in August.
Mishra, whose last Test for India came in 2011, will replace fellow spinner Karn Sharma, who has been ruled out as he is still recovering from a fractured finger.
The 32-year-old was recalled following his excellent performance with the ball in the 2014-15 Ranji Trophy season, where he took 10 wickets in six matches for Haryana at an average of 20.40.
“Amit Mishra has always been part of our thinking,” India’s chairman of selectors Sandeep Patil said in Delhi. “If you remember, even last year he was in the reserves [for the West Indies series]. The final authority of picking the XI is the role of the captain and the team management. Why A was not played and why B was picked it is not what we get into. Looking at the conditions, we have picked him for this SL tour.”
The other high-profile player not to be included in the squad was pace bowler Mohammed Shami as he is currently nursing a knee injury.
Meanwhile, batsman Lokesh Rahul has regained his place in the Test team after missing out on the one-off Test match against Bangladesh since he was diagnosed with dengue fever.
The national selectors also opted not to include a back-up wicketkeeper for Wriddhiman Saha and believe that he is the best man to occupy the number six spot on the batting line-up.
“We have a standby wicketkeeper we have nominated,” Patil said. “Secretary and selectors, we are aware who is the wicketkeeper nominated if there is injury on the SL tour.
“Does he have the technique or not, time will tell. We have backed him looking at his performance in domestic cricket. The kind of experience he carries. You immediately cannot replace someone like Dhoni and come in and deliver the results. But we certainly feel that Wriddhiman is the right option and looking at his ability in batting as well, he should strike a good balance.”
India Test Squad: Virat Kohli (capt), Varun Aaron, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shikhar Dhawan, Harbhajan Singh, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Wriddhiman Saha, Ishant Sharma, Amit Mishra, Rohit Sharma, Murali Vijay, Umesh Yadav, KL Rahul