Asia Cup 2011-12 February 29, 2012

Sehwag rested, Tendulkar picked for Asia Cup

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Virender Sehwag has been rested from India's one-day squad for next month's Asia Cup, with Virat Kohli taking over as vice-captain. Sachin Tendulkar has been picked for the tournament, while allrounder Yusuf Pathan and Bengal fast bowler Ashok Dinda make comebacks. Fast bowlers Zaheer Khan and Umesh Yadav have been rested.

Kohli's elevation to vice-captaincy comes after his sustained run of success in one-day cricket. He was the highest run-getter in the format in 2011, is the leading run-scorer in the ongoing Commonwealth Bank series and has been one of India's few bright spots on the dismal tour of Australia. "The selection committee and board feels that Virat Kohli could be good future captaincy material," Kris Srikkanth, the chairman of selectors, told reporters in Mumbai.

Over the past few days, there had been intense media speculation about whether Sehwag and Tendulkar would be selected for the Asia Cup. Sehwag has had a poor run in the ongoing CB series in Australia, averaging 13 in five one-day innings.

Srikkanth stressed that Sehwag had not been axed. "Unfortunately Virender Sehwag and Zaheer Khan have been asked to take rest by the physiotherapist. It is purely on injury grounds both have been rested," he said. "I can assure you that nobody has been dropped."

Tendulkar has been selective about the ODI series he plays over the past couple of years. The CB series, in which he's made 143 runs in seven innings, was his first limited-overs engagement for India since last year's World Cup.

The CB series is also the only ODI series the injury-prone Zaheer has been involved in since the World Cup. The decision to rest him and Yadav opened the doors for Dinda, who last represented India in the previous edition of the Asia Cup, in 2010. His selection comes on the back of a successful Ranji Trophy, in which he was the second-highest wicket-taker with 37 in six matches. Several other contenders for a fast bowling slot, including Varun Aaron and Sreesanth, are still recovering from injuries.

Allrounder Yusuf has recovered from a knee injury which cut short his Ranji season, and will resume his battle for the No. 7 allrounder's slot with Ravindra Jadeja. Yusuf has been out of the Indian side since a listless tour of West Indies soon after being part of the World Cup-winning squad. Jadeja cornered that spot with some impressive performances against England and West Indies last year, but has not been at his best in the CB series. In the league phase, he took three wickets at an average of 109, and scored 101 runs in seven innings.

Among the fringe players, India have retained batsman Manoj Tiwary and legspinner Rahul Sharma, but have axed backup wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel.

India are defending champions of the Asia Cup, which will be held in Mirpur from March 11 to 22 and also features Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on March 3, 2012, 21:47 GMT

    sehwag is still young , and have a capacity to break another record in future . so , he should not be dropped .

  • ramesh5 on March 3, 2012, 16:34 GMT

    Our selectors have lacked boldness in confronting facts head on. Sachin, Sewag have been failures in the ODI series in Australia but they say, they have rested Sehwag, Sachin deserves another chance because of his past achievements and also that he is a great player. Yes, he was, repeat "was" a great player but not now on current form. Similarly, all the seniors from Sehwag, Sachin, Dravid and VVS should be dropped summarily since they do not want to retire in spite of very poor performances. But Our selectors cannot take very tough decisions and BCCI is devoid of any vision or strategy for the future. It is just a money making commercial company. India can never aspire to be a Super Power in Cricket like Australia of recent past or the West Indies of the 1980's. God save Indian Cricket.

  • csowmi7 on March 3, 2012, 12:34 GMT

    cant believe everyone's calling for tendulkar's head. You cant expect to win matches based entirely on youth. In this team itself the only experienced batsman are tendulkar, gambhir and dhoni. This means that youngsters occupy 4/7 spots in batting and in bowling 3/4 assuming praveen kumar plays. A successful cricket team needs the right blend of youth and experience so that the old pros can guide the youngsters.

  • JaneJosephene on March 3, 2012, 12:21 GMT

    tendulkar should also b dropped as he is now player of the past, He will not give up like ponting and indian management will have to forcefully end his ODI carrier

  • dummy4fb on March 3, 2012, 9:22 GMT

    Now we SL fans are crying that our selectors have wasted Chandimal's two years of cricket life by keeping Sanath, chamara silva, Kandhambi in the team.. Likewise in very near future Indian fans are gonna feel for some talented Indian youngsters who is crying inside and watching senior Indian bats-men's pathetic performance in TV. I have seen many talented young Indian cricketers in Ranji trophy and IPL. Anyway we are just spectators. Selectors know much than what we know.. Lets wait and see.

  • posybeon123 on March 3, 2012, 2:12 GMT

    where is pujara is is awesomenesss

  • BIPEEEN on March 2, 2012, 14:56 GMT

    Rested????????????? Isn't there a word "DROPPED" on India???????????????

  • Rumy1 on March 2, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    Top 4 technically and temperamentaly adept batsmen who deserve to be in Indian team but sadly aren't for lack of godfathers in BCCI and Selectors are JAFFER/32 (for Tests), KAIF/32 (Tests and ODIs), PUJARA (Tests and ODIs) and BADRINATH/31 (all 3 formats).With Sehwag, Kohli, Dhoni/Saha and these 4, India will be served well in ODIs and Tests for next 4-5 years.Gambhir, Raina and Rohit should be restricted to only T20s.They have failed time and again despite enough chances to prove themselves.Ashwin is an average Ranji offie with a carrom ball.He is not ODI / Test level material and could be restricted to only T20s.Rahul Sharma looks good for ODIs / T20s.He could be a match winner on any track.Ojha is a quality bowler and looks good for ODIs / Tests.However, it is Bhajji who deserves a comeback.Praveen, Dinda, Vinay and Mithun are all spent forces.Time is up for them.Umesh, Irfan and Ishant must be persisted with.Yusuf must be prefered over Jadeja in ODI / T20.Zak to play only in Tests.

  • NALINWIJ on March 2, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    I have doubts about Jadeja""s value in the side and I would rate him well below Ashwin and possibly in par with YUSUF PATHAN. Amazingly he is paid 2 million in IPL. This reminds me of an Australian footballer who was described as having a market value of $900,000 but a performance value of $90,000.

  • PMKKR on March 2, 2012, 13:38 GMT

    Three seniors body language when they are in the field is never encouraging the youngsters. I think fielding coach should be bold enough to tell them to be alert. I think the players who should be rested, should perform in the domestic cricket to come back in the team, if he is not playing or not performing in the domestic cricket then should not be given the chance to play like Harbhajan Singh. It should apply on all whether it is Sachin.

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