New Delhi: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the squad for initial two Tests encounters versus England, slated to commence on January 25. Rohit Sharma, who recently led India in the two-match Test series against South Africa, will continue as the captain, steering the team against the likes of Ben Stokes and company.
In a noteworthy development, budding wicketkeeper-batsman Dhruv Jurel has earned his inaugural call-up to the Indian squad, securing a spot as a wicketkeeper alongside the experienced duo of KL Rahul and KS Bharat.
For the upcoming series, India has opted for a formidable spin attack, enlisting the services of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, and Kuldeep Yadav for the first two matches. Patel and Yadav, absent from the recent South Africa tour, are poised to take advantage of the anticipated turn on home pitches.
This quartet will join forces with the seasoned duo of Ashwin and Jadeja in a 16-member squad that will contest the initial matches of the five-game series in Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam.
Recalling England’s last tour of India in 2021, the team faced considerable challenges coping with the extreme turn, with Ashwin and Patel accounting for an impressive tally of 60 wickets.
Unfortunately, Abhimanyu Easwaran finds himself omitted from the squad, alongside pace-bowling all-rounder Shardul Thakur. Meanwhile, pacer Prasidh Krishna, who made his debut in the South Africa series, is also excluded, with Avesh Khan retaining his spot. The absence of Mohammed Shami due to injury concerns remains, raising questions about Ishan Kishan’s non-inclusion as well.
The finalized Test squad for the first two matches against England comprises Rohit Sharma (captain), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wicketkeeper), KS Bharat (wicketkeeper), Dhruv Jurel (wicketkeeper), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah (vice-captain), and Avesh Khan.