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Why Ashwin may not be picked for Australia ODIs

Last updated on: September 10, 2017 01:14 IST

The selectors may allow the India off-spinner to complete his remaining two matches for Worcestershire in English county cricket.

Ravichandran Ashwin

IMAGE: India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin reacts. Photograph: BCCI

The national selection committee will be taking a call on whether to summon Ravichandran Ashwin midway through his county stint as they pick the squad for the first three ODIs against Australia in New Delhi, on Sunday.

Ashwin is currently playing for Worcestershire in the Division 2 of the English county and he has a four-match contract, of which only two matches are complete so far.

Ashwin's next assignment is a home game against Leicestershire from September 12-15 followed by his last game against Durham from September 25-28.

If Ashwin is allowed to play these two games, he won't be available for the five-match ODI series against Australia.

With both Axar Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal performing admirably, the selectors may just allow Ashwin to complete his county engagement.

"Ashwin has a contract of four games for Worcestershire. If he is called back after two games only, then the purpose of sending him to get a proper county exposure is lost. It's the team management and the selectors who decided that he should be playing county cricket," a BCCI official privy to selection matter said on Saturday.

While there won't be any big surprises but keeping in mind 23 international matches (11 ODIs, nine T20 Internationals, three Tests) over next three months, the selectors along with the team management would like to check the workload of the bowling unit -- pacers as well as the spinners.

It will be interesting if either Bhuvneshwar Kumar or Jasprit Bumrah is given some rest, bringing back Umesh Yadav or Mohammed Shami for the first three games.

The batting line-up looks set as of now with all the top players -- skipper Virat Kohli, his deputy Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Kedar Jadhav, Mahendra Singh Dhoni being automatic picks.

Hardik Pandya is expected to continue with his role as the pace bowling all-rounder.

The selection meeting is expected to be held over a conference call as chairman MSK Prasad and Devang Gandhi are watching Duleep Trophy match in Lucknow while Sarandeep Singh is in Delhi.

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