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November 27, 2001
Indian selectors have done the expected by naming Virender Sehwag in the 14-member squad for the first Test due to start at Mohali on December 3. This despite the International Cricket Council's clear directive that Sehwag was ineligible for the Test.
Chandu Borde, the chairman of selectors while explaining the decision, said, "Like I said yesterday, we have based our decisions on merit."
Sehwag's selection aside there were many surprises in the squad announced by Borde at Jaipur. None of the fast bowlers who went to South Africa have been retained. While Javagal Srinath had declared himself ineligible following a fracture that he sustained at Centurion, Ashish Nehra, Zaheer Khan, Venkatesh Prasad and Ajit Agarkar were all left out in the cold.
The surprise inclusions included Iqbal Siddiqui, the Maharashtra and India 'A' right-arm opening bowler who returned figures of 4-36 in the ongoing match against England at Jaipur on Wednesday. The other new faces were all-rounder Sanjay Bangar and Kerala fast bowler Tinu Yohannan.
Opener Connor Williams has also been retained, while Deep Dasgupta, one of the finds of India's controversy-ridden tour of South Africa, will be the wicket-keeper.
Squad: Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Connor Williams, Shiv Sunder Das, VVS Laxman, Virender Sehwag, Iqbal Siddiqui, Tinu Yohannan, Sanjay Bangar, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Deep Dasgupta, Sarandeep Singh
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