The BCCI today announced the Indian team for the remainder of the 3 Test matches against England. The noticeable change is the omission of Gautam Gambhir and the inclusion of Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Virat Kohli(Capt), Ajinkya Rahane, KL Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Karun Nair, W Saha (WK), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Jayant Yadav, Amit Mishra, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya.
When Gambhir was named in the Delhi Ranji trophy squad last week, speculation peaked that he was out of favour with KL Rahul having walked back in. And now, with the selectors having favoured KL Rahul, Gambhir seems certain to be relegated to the Ranji Trophy for the remainder of the season.
Much was expected from Gambhir after the Delhi opener made a comeback into the national squad after a two-year hiatus. His first Test against New Zealand yielded a respectable 29 and 50. He then returned to score a big 147 against Odisha in a Ranji Trophy match at Mohali (incidentally the venue for the third Test against England).
He looked to take the good form into the first Test against England at Rajkot, but 29 was all that he could manage. A nought in the second innings didn’t do his cause any good.
Meanwhile, Bhuvneshwar Kumar returns to the squad. The medium-pacer had sustained a back strain against New Zealand during the Kolkata test and was sidelined.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar proved his fitness by playing a Ranji Trophy game against Mumbai at Mysore. Despite failing to pick up any wickets during that outing, the selectors seem convinced enough to include him back in the side. His inclusion now provides additional options for Virat Kohli as India look to press the advantage.