Madhya Pradesh wicket-keeper batsman Naman Ojha will lead a third string Board President’s XI squad against Sri Lanka in a two-day warm-up tie, scheduled to be played in Kolkata from November 11.
The 13-member squad primarily comprises of players from four states — Hyderabad, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh and Punjab as these are the teams, which won’t feature during the fifth round of the Ranji Trophy.
India A and U-19 coach Rahul Dravid has made it clear that Ranji Trophy is sacrosanct and players should be playing for their state teams.
The same pattern was followed recently when the national selectors named two India A squads for series against New Zealand A, so as the players do not have to skip Ranji games.
The squad includes out-of-favour Kerala batsman Sanju Samson as well. Punjab opener Jiwanjot Singh too finds a place in the team. He recently led Punjab in their opening encounter of Ranji Trophy against Himachal Pradesh in absence of captain Harbhajan Singh and vice-captain Yuvraj Singh.
Selectors also decided to give a chance to Punjab batsman Abhishek Gupta, who scored a double century in his first-class debut in the season opener against Himachal Pradesh.
B Sandeep, Tanmay Agarwal and Rohan Prem are the other members in the batting department.
The pace department consists of Hyderabad’s left-arm pacer Chama Milind, Sandeep Warrier from Kerala and Avesh Khan from Madhya Pradesh. Avesh has been part of Board President’s XI set-up during the warm-up games against New Zealand and Australia.
MP all-rounder Jalaj Saxena, who now plays for Kerala, will lead the spin department, assisted by Hyderabad’s leg-spinner Akash Bhandari.
Squad: Naman Ojha (C)(WK), Sanju Samson, Jiwanjot Singh, B Sandeep, Tanmay Agarwal, Abhishek Gupta, Rohan Prem, Akash Bhandari, Jalaj Saxena, Chama Milind, Avesh Khan, Sandeep Warrier, Ravi Kiran.