India announced a 20-member squad for the inaugural ICC World Test Championship final against New Zealand and also for the five-match Test series against England. Ravindra Jadeja and Mohammed Shami returned back into the squad after recovering from their respective injuries, which had kept them out of the England Test series at home. But there was no place for Hardik Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav. Pandya and Yadav were part of the Indian squad for the four-match Test series against England but have not been included in the 20-member squad. India Squad for ICC World Test Championship Final and Test Series vs England Announced: Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami Return As BCCI Name 20-Member Team.
Hanuma Vihari, who was injured in Australia and did not play the England series, also made a return into the side while Washington Sundar and Shardul Thakur kept their place. KL Rahul and Wriddhiman Saha have been named but their inclusion in the squad is subject to fitness clearance. Wriddhiman tested positive for COVID-19 during his stint with the Sunrisers Hyderabad in IPL 2021 which had been indefinitely suspended while KL Rahul recently underwent surgery for appendicitis and is still recovering. Chetan Sakariya Rushes To Hospital After IPL 2021 Postponement For COVID-19 Positive Father.
While Rahul and Saha have still been named in the Test squad, Hardik and Kuldeep found no place in the squad. Hardik is reportedly still to fully recover from the shoulder injury he had suffered last year. The Mumbai Indians all-rounder also had a shoulder niggle during IPL 2021 and did not bowl a single over in the tournament but bowled in the ODI and T20I series against England prior to IPL 2021.
Kuldeep Yadav, on the other, finds himself on the wrong side of everything at this stage of the career. He has been dropped from the white-ball squad of the Indian team and also did not play a single match in IPL 2021 with his team Kolkata Knight Riders preferring Varun Chakravarthy and Harbhajan Singh over him. Hardik last played a Test match in 2018 while Kuldeep did not play a single Test in Australia and bowled only 12.2 overs in the final Test match against England.
BCCI also named four standby players, who will travel to England with the squad and will replace the players in case of an injury or any other issue that requires a replacement. Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Arzan Nagwaswalla are the four standby players.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on May 07, 2021 07:36 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).