Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) on Friday announced the Indian squad for the upcoming home series against Australia starting February 24. Batsman K L Rahul has been recalled for the five-match One Day International (ODI) and two-match T20 International (T20) series but the selectors dropped Dinesh Karthik for ODIs while picking rookie leg-spinner Mayank Markande as the only new face in T20 squad. Virat Kohli is back after rest and will lead the Indian cricket team. India will play two T20 Internationals and five ODIs, starting February 24, in what will be their last international assignment before the ICC World Cup 2019, which begins in England on May 30.
Rahul fought his way back after a couple of good innings for India A against England Lions in the two unofficial Tests, which concluded hours before the national selection committee met in Mumbai.
Battling indifferent form in Australia, the opener was called back after the unsavoury comments on women in a TV talk show, following which he was asked to regain his form by concentrating on domestic cricket.
The 21-year-old Markande was rewarded soon after his five-wicket haul, which powered India A to an innings and 68-run victory over England Lions in the second unofficial Test.
He has also been a part of the IPL franchise Mumbai Indians.
The omission of Karthik is an indicator as to who among Rishabh Pant and the Tamil Nadu player will board the Heathrow-bound flight as a specialist-batsman-cum-second-wicketkeeper for the cricket World Cup 2019.
Pant has found a place in both the squads.
India’s squad for 1st and 2nd ODI: Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MSD (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohamed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Vijay Shankar, Rishabh Pant, Siddharth Kaul, KL Rahul
India’s squad for remaining three ODIs: Virat Kohli (Capt), Rohit Sharma (vc), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MSD (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Vijay Shankar, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant