Rohit, Shami included in India’s squad for Champions Trophy

Rohit has not played international cricket since October 2016

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

India batsman Rohit Sharma and pace bowler Mohammed Shami have both returned to the national team for the Champions Trophy in June.

Rohit has not played international cricket since October last year as he underwent an operation after injuring his thigh.

However, he has been playing in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), where he is captaining the Mumbai Indians, who have already qualified for the playoffs.

As for Shami, he last played international cricket in August 2016, but has not featured in an ODI since the semi-final of the 2015 World Cup.

But, like Rohit, he has proved his fitness by playing for the Delhi Daredevils in the IPL.

Meanwhile, veteran all-rounder Yuvraj Singh also made the cut and will provide a third spin option behind the go-to spin duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.

Ashwin is currently recovering from a sports hernia, which ruled him out of the IPL, but he is expected to be fit for the Champions Trophy, which will be held in England.

“Ashwin’s selection was not a difficult decision. He’s had rest, isn’t out of form. We’ve been preparing him for the Champions Trophy,” chairman of selectors MSK Prasad said.

There was no place in the side for all-rounder Suresh Raina, but he has been placed on standby with Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Kuldeep Yadav and Shardul Thakur.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have confirmed that they will get visas for the five players should they be required at any point in the tournament.

“We are completely impressed with Rishabh Pant. But he missed out because of squad combination. We will groom him for the future,” Prasad said.

Raina was not the only player to miss out as opener Lokesh Rahul suffered the same fate. However, unlike Raina, Rahul’s failure to make the squad stems from the fact that he is still on the road to recovery after undergoing shoulder surgery.

Rahul revealed that he had sustained the injury during the four-Test series against Australia and added that he was unlikely to be fit in time for the Champions Trophy.

India’s Champions Trophy Squad: Virat Kohli (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Manish Pandey

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