Gurkeerat Singh and Sreenath Aravind are the new additions for India’s limited-overs series against South Africa next month.
Punjab all-rounder Gurkeerat received his first call-up to the one-day squad, while Karnataka left-arm seamer Sreenath Aravind was the surprise inclusion in the Twenty20 team.
Veteran Harbhajan Singh and Amit Mishra both earned recalls, but there was still no place for all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja as selectors kept faith with Axar Patel. Opener Shikhar Dhawan was also included after recovering from a hand injury picked up against Sri Lanka last month.
Seniors like Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, R Ashwin and Suresh Raina were named for the three T20s and the first three ODIs, which start on October 2 in Dharamsala, after being rested for the Zimbabwe tour. In the pace attack, Umesh Yadav found a place in the ODI squad but Varun Aaron was left out of both formats.
“We wanted variety in the bowling. We believe a left-arm medium pacer will complement the other bowlers well,” Sandip Patil, chairman of the selection committee, said of Arvind’s selection.
“Arvind has performed very well in domestic cricket and his selection sends the right message to the others striving to break into the team.”
Gurkeerat, 25, said: “It’s a huge break for me. If I am given a chance to play, I won’t let this opportunity go begging. The all-rounder’s position in the Indian team is still up for grabs and I want to seal that spot. Playing against Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel will be a challenge, and it will be a very good opportunity for me.”
Squads: T20s: MS Dhoni (captain and wicketkeeper), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ajinkya Rahane, Ambati Rayudu, Stuart Binny, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Harbhajan Singh, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohit Sharma, Amit Mishra, S Aravind.
First three ODIs: Dhoni, Dhawan, Rohit, Kohli, Rayudu, Raina, Rahane, Binny, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Gurkeerat Singh, Mishra, Kumar, Mohit Sharma, Umesh Yadav.