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Ashwin, Vijay boost for TN in Ranji Trophy opener

03 Oct 2017, 19:12 IST
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Chennai, Oct 3 (PTI) Ignored for India's Twenty20 series against Australia, off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was today named in the 15-member Tamil Nadu Ranji squad along with Test opener Murali Vijay for the season-opener against Andhra Pradesh, starting Friday.

The team, to be led by Abhinav Mukund, would miss the services of the experienced batsman-wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik and all-rounder Vijay Shankar.

Karthik has been picked for the T20 series against Australia while Shankar features in the Board President's XI to face New Zealand.

The team includes exciting all-rounder Washington Sundar, who has impressed with his recent performances including in the Duleep Trophy final.

Baba Indrajith, who scored a double ton on his Duleep Trophy debut, would be Mukund's deputy.

The team also features aggressive wicketkeeper-batsman N Jagadeesan and another gloveman in R Rohith, who shone in the recent Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL).

In the absence of T Natarajan and Aswin Crist due to fitness issues, the pace attack would be led by K Vignesh, who did well in his debut season with 30-plus wickets as Tamil Nadu made the semifinals.

L Vignesh and V Lakshman are the other pacemen named in the squad.

With the wicket at the M A Chidambaram Stadium likely to assist the spinners, the selectors have picked three specialists apart from Ashwin and Washington Sundar.

"It is a good team. We have a mix of experience and youth. The availability of Ashwin and Vijay is certain to bolster the squad," Chairman of selectors Sridharan Sharath told PTI.

Left-arm spinner R Sai Kishore and Lakshman, who had done well in the local league, have also been picked.

"Not having Vijay Shankar (limited overs captain) is a big miss. But we have Ashwin, Washington Sundar and other all-rounders in the squad," Sharath said.

Squad: Abhinav Mukund (C), Baba Indrajith (VC), M Vijay, M Kaushik Gandhi, N Jagadeesan (WK), Baba Aparajith, MS Washington Sundar, Rahil S Shah, K Vignesh, R Ashwin, L Vignesh, R Sai Kishore, V Lakshman, R Rohith (WK) and Malolan Rangarajan

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