Indian team for two Tests against England announced

NEW DELHI: The Indian cricket team for first two Tests against England was announced on Wednesday. The team will be missing the services of injured regular opening batsmen Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan for the first two Test matches.

Chief Selector MSK Prasad while announcing the team said that Rohit had a thigh injury and might have to undergo surgery and recovery might take 6-8 weeks. As KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan are nursing injuries, their availability is uncertain at present.

Veteran opener Gautam Gambhir has been retained in the 15-member team. Pacer Ishant Sharma, who was diagnosed with chikungunya before the Test series against Kiwis, has recovered fully and selected for the England series.

Hardik Pandya has been included in the Test squad for the first time in his career. Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar fully recovered from hamstring injury but not selected because of lack of match practice in recent past.

India are presently the No. 1 ranked team in Tests, following their 3-0 victory against New Zealand. The first Test against England is in Rajkot from November 9.

The other Tests are slated to be held in Vishakapatnam (November 17-21), Mohali (November 26-30), Mumbai (December 8-12) and Chennai (December 16-20) before the two sides also play three ODIs and T20s each against each other.

Probable opening pair for the first two Tests would be Gautam Gambhir and Karun Nair/Hardik Pandya.

Test squad for first two Tests: Virat Kohli (capt.), R Ashwin, Gautam Gambhir, Ravindra Jadeja, Amit Mishra, Mohammad Shami, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Wriddhiman Saha, Karun Nair, M Vijay, Umesh Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ishant Sharma and Jayant Yadav.

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