Published: Thu, October 11, 2018
Sport | By

Rishabh Pant gets call-up for first two ODIs as Virat Kohli returns

Rishabh Pant gets call-up for first two ODIs as Virat Kohli returns

Pant has replaced Dinesh Karthik in the squad. Both played the Asia Cup but were rested for the Test series against Windies.

India will have to wait for the return of Hardik Pandya, who suffered a lower back injury during the Asia Cup in the UAE and had to be stretchered out. Also back in the mix is fast bowler Mohammad Shami, who last played an ODI over a year ago. He had played the IPL with some niggles and was later dropped for the one-off Test against Afghanistan after failing a fitness test at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru.

Left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed continues to stay with the team after an impressive debut in the Asia Cup. Kohli's performance against West Indies in the first Test hinted that the Run Machine is perfectly fit and he might not be inclined to take any further rest.

"That's the reason why we have included Khaleel, Shardul [Thakur] and Shami in this squad now", he said.

"Of course Umesh Yadav is also part of our pool and as we are looking at a workload management strategy". Ravindra Jadeja is also expected to make it after his lion-hearted show as Axar Patel's replacement. The spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal has been named in the Indian team.

Pant has been called up by the selectors, who also went ahead with MS Dhoni.

On KL Rahul, who returned to form at the fag end of the England series but failed to capitalise on a wicket in Rajkot where every other Indian batsmen made merry, Arun said the former is a "fantastic player" who should be persisted with. "We have given a few opportunities to Karthik". India thrashed West Indies by an innings and 272 runs to win the Test. As a result of a string of good performances, Rishabh Pant got a much-deserved call-up to the Indian side for the five-match ODI series which begins on October 21 in Guwahati.

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