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Rohit to lead young squad for Lanka T20 tri-series

February 25, 2018 14:08 IST

Kohli, Dhoni, key bowlers rested

Wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant in India's squad after solid season.

Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma will lead India in the tri-series in Sri Lanka in the absence of Virat Kohi and Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Photograph: BCCI

Rohit Sharma will lead a second string Indian team, comprising leading performers in domestic (Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 and IPL) tournaments, for the Twenty20 tri-series, also involving Bangladesh, in Sri Lanka, starting March 6.

Shikhar Dhawan will be his deputy in the side that has as many as six changes.

Virat Kohli and Mahendra Singh Dhoni are among a host of regular players rested.

"MS Dhoni was not available for selection as he had requested for rest," national selector MSK Prasad was quoted as saying in a statement from the BCCI.

The fast bowling duo of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah have also been rested along with all-rounder Hardik Pandya.

"We've kept in mind the workload and upcoming schedule while finalising the team for Nidahas Trophy. The high-performance team has suggested that adequate rest should be given to our fast bowlers to help improve athletic performance, maximize rest and prevent injury," Prasad added.

Chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav is also not in the Sri Lanka bound team.

A close look will indicate that the selectors maintained consistency by selecting players who were part of the home T20s against Sri Lanka in December.

Coming back in the team are prolific wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant, after a solid season in white-ball cricket, and centuries in both national T20s and One-dayers.

Off spinner Washington Sundar, pacer Mohammed Siraj and all rounder Deepak Hooda are back in the side after the home series against Sri Lanka.

All-rounder Vijay Shankar is the replacement for Pandya.

Dinesh Karthik is the first ‘keeper while Pant may play as pure batsman.

The prominent performer to miss out was Mayank Agarwal who scored 2000-plus runs in the season.

"Mayank has not been selected because we are following a pattern. Any domestic performer will have to play India A before being considered for senior team selection," a senior BCCI official close to selection committee told PTI.

The squad: Rohit Sharma (captain), Shikhar Dhawan (vice-captain), KL Rahul, Suresh Raina, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Deepak Hooda, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Vijay Shankar, Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat, Mohammad Siraj, Rishabh Pant (wk).

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