India’s squad for the three-Test series against Sri Lanka has no surprise selections. The selection committee led by MSK Prasad announced a 16-man squad right after the completion of the limited-overs tour of the Caribbean.
India squad for Sri Lanka tour 2017 – Test
July 17 update: Shikhar Dhawan, who wasn’t named in the original Indian squad for the upcoming three-Test series against Sri Lanka, has replaced Murali Vijay, who has been ruled out due to a wrist injury. The right-handed Tamilnadu opener experienced pain in his right wrist during a preparatory match and has been advised to continue his rehabilitation programme by the BCCI medical team.
Dhawan is in line for a Test return, having last played a Test match in September 2016, at Eden Gardens against New Zealand.
The other opener who was also injured at the end of India’s home season 2016-17, Lokesh Rahul (left shoulder injury), has recovered and retained his place in the squad from the Australia Test series.
Rohit Sharma, who missed three-fourth of the 2016-17 home season because of a right quadriceps injury, has returned to the Indian Test squad for the first time since September 2016.
The Mumbai stylist has replaced Karnataka middle order batsman, Karun Nair, who has been left out after three failures in his last four Test innings (26, 0, 23, and 5). Incidentally, these were the only four innings since his 303* against England in December 2016. Jayant Yadav, like Nair, has been dropped since the national team’s last Test assignment.
Hardik Pandya is another player, along with his Mumbai Indians captain, who has returned to the Test side after being out with an injury the last time around. Kuldeep Yadav has retained his place after bowling India to a Test series-winning victory against Australia in Dharamsala in March this year, as has Tamil Nadu opening batsman Abhinav Mukund despite failing to make an impression in the Bangalore Test against Australia.
Mohammed Shami, who was added to the squad ahead of Dharamsala’s debut Test and rumoured to play in the same because of the prevalent seamer-friendly conditions, has been named for the Tests against the Lankan Lions. The rest of the players, including spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, have picked themselves in what is a very strong Indian squad.
Jasprit Bumrah returned to India after the completion of India’s Champions Trophy 2017 campaign, amid suggestions that the Indian selectors want to try him in the Test format and might draft into the squad for the Srilanka Tests. The Baroda pacer remains a limited-overs bowler for India yet.
India’s squad for the three Tests in full: Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, Abhinav Mukund, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, and Kuldeep Yadav
India’s likely playing XI for the first Test v Sri Lanka in Galle: 1. Virat Kohli (c), 2. Shikhar Dhawan, 3. Lokesh Rahul, 4. Cheteshwar Pujara, 5. Ajinkya Rahane, 6. Wriddhiman Saha (wk), 7. Ravichandran Ashwin, 8. Ravindra Jadeja, 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Ishant Sharma, 10. Umesh Yadav, and 11. Mohammed Shami