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Shaw, Gill in India's squad for New Zealand Tests

Last updated on: February 04, 2020 10:35 IST

Mayank Agarwal replaces injured Rohit Sharma in squad for three ODIs against New Zealand.

Prithvi Shaw

IMAGE: Prithvi Shaw, who last played for India in October 2018, was included in the squad after Rohit Sharma was ruled out of the ODI and Test series due to a left calf muscle strain Photograph: PTI

Opener Prithvi Shaw is back in India’s Test team for the two-match series against New Zealand. Also named in the 16-man squad is Shubman Gill.


Shaw, who last played for India in October 2018, returns to the side after Rohit Sharma was ruled out of the ODI and Test series due to a left calf muscle strain.

Mayank Agarwal will replace Rohit in squad for the three ODIs against New Zealand, beginning in Hamilton on Wednesday.

"Vice-captain Rohit Sharma sustained a left calf muscle strain during the fifth T20I against New Zealand at Tauranga on Sunday.

"He underwent an MRI scan in Hamilton on Monday. The opening batsman has been ruled out of the upcoming ODI and the Test series and will be referred to the National Cricket Academy for further management of his injury," read a statement from the BCCI.

Last month, Shaw, who scored a century on Test debut against the West Indies in October 2018, received a maiden ODI call-up for the New Zealand series. After serving an eight-month doping ban last year, he showed no signs of the lay-off and was instantaneously among the runs in domestic cricket, a double hundred against Baroda being the highlight.

Shaw has been in New Zealand for more than two weeks with the A side and smashed a 150 against New Zealand XI in his first innings on the tour.

Shubman Gill

IMAGE: India A’s Shubman Gill celebrates after registering his second double century on an away tour, an unbeaten 204, in the drawn first Test against New Zealand A last week. Photograph: Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images

His India Undder-19 teammate Gill retained his place in the Test squad, as expected, following a match-saving double hundred for India A against New Zealand on Sunday.

Gill could make his debut after impressing for the India A side, scoring 83 and 204 not out in an unofficial Test against New Zealand A.

Both Shaw and Gill are openers, but the former may open alongside Agarwal in the first Test at Basin Reserve.

Gill, who smashed the double ton batting at number four, could can also make the eleven as a middle-order batsman. He has played two ODIs and was part of the Test squad in the home series against South Africa and Bangladesh but did not get a game.

Kuldeep Yadav, who did not make the eleven in the five T20s against New Zealand, was dropped from the Test squad as the selectors preferred going for two specialist spinner options in Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin.  

The Chinaman bowler played his last Test on the tour of Australia last January year and during the home season Ashwin and Jadeja were the preferred choices.

Pacer Navdeep Saini too has made his way into the Test side following impressive performances in limited-overs cricket. Saini received his maiden Test call-up for the one-off Test against Afghanistan in 2018 but is yet to make his debut. However, he has gone on to play three ODIs and 10 T20s for India.

Senior pacer Ishant Sharma, who twisted his ankle during a Ranji Trophy game last month, retained his place in the side but his participation in the series is subject to fitness. 

The two-Test series begins in Wellington on February 21. The second Test is in Christchurch.

India's Test squad: Virat Kohli (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Mohd. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Ishant Sharma (subject to fitness clearance).

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