An injured Harbhajan Singh was on Sunday left out of the Indian team while Saurashtra all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and Uttar Pradesh seamer Praveen Kumar were drafted in the 15-member squad for the upcoming cricket tour of Sri Lanka starting later this month.
Delhi batsman Virat Kohli,who was part of the Indian squad for the ODI series against England late last year,was also dropped from the side.
BCCI joint secretary Sanjay Jagdale today announced the 15-member squad which has seven specialist batsmen in captain M S Dhoni,vice captain Virender Sehwag,Sachin Tendulkar,Yuvraj Singh,Gautam Gambhir,Rohit Sharma and Suresh Raina.
The five ODIs and a Twenty20 match in Sri Lanka would also test the all-round ability of Jadeja and Yusuf Pathan.
In Harbhajan’s absence,Hyderabad left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha will lead the spin department hoping to get adequate support from Jadeja at the other end.
“The Indian team will assemble in Chennai on January 25 and practice under lights at the M A Chidambaram Stadium. They would then depart for Sri Lanka the next day,” Jagdale said.
Jadeja’s inclusion is the reward for the stellar performance in the domestic cricket by the 20-year-old all-rounder,who bats in the lower middle order and bowls left-arm spin for Saurashtra.
Dambulla is scheduled to host the first two India-Sri Lanka ODIs on January 28 and 30,followed by three one dayers in Colombo on February 2,5 and 8.
The only Twenty20 match will take place in Colombo on February 10 after which the Indian team will return home and catch some rest before leaving for New Zealand.
Squad: M S Dhoni (captain),Virender Sehwag (vice captain),Sachin Tendulkar,Yuvraj Singh,Gautam Gambhir,Rohit Sharma,Yusuf Pathan,Zaheer Khan,Ishant Sharma,Pragyan Ojha,Munaf Patel,Irfan Pathan,Suresh Raina,Ravindra Jadeja and Praveen Kumar.