Australia in India 2013-14 September 30, 2013

Yuvraj back in limited-overs squad

ESPNcricinfo staff

Yuvraj Singh has made a comeback to India's limited-overs squad for the Twenty20 and first three ODIs of the home series against Australia. There were four changes made to India's last first-choice ODI squad, the one that won the Champions Trophy in England. Yuvraj replaced opener M Vijay, Dinesh Karthik lost out to his Mumbai Indians team-mate Ambati Rayudu, the injured Irfan Pathan made way for Mohammed Shami, and Jaydev Unadkat's left-arm seam was preferred to Umesh Yadav's erratic-at-times pace.

"I am happy the selectors have reposed faith in me. Now, I have to deliver," Yuvraj told Mid-Day, after news of his selection broke. "My footwork and timing are alright. The bat swing is in order as well. That is why I got runs against the West Indies and New Zealand A teams. That gave me confidence. Now, I have to capitalise on the opportunity."

Yuvraj's last ODI was against England in Dharamsala in January 2013. He was dropped from the squad for the Champions Trophy and did not feature in the Zimbabwe series either, when India had rested several first-choice players. However, following a fitness programme in France, he has shown a return to top form in List A cricket. He was the leading run-getter for India A in the limited-overs series against the touring West Indies A, with 224 runs from three matches, including one hundred and a fifty at an average of 74.66. He also scored a half-century for India Blue in the Challenger Trophy, a domestic 50-overs tournament.

A fit Yuvraj is seen as a bigger asset than Karthik. Karthik had a decent run in England and in Zimbabwe, but he failed to reach 50 in the tri-series in the West Indies. In effect, Karthik has lost out to Rayudu, who scored 101 runs off 163 balls at an average of 50.5 against Zimbabwe.

Two other changes from the Champions Trophy squad mostly explain themselves. Vijay struggled in the West Indies, and Irfan is injured. Yadav, though, remains a curious case. He cannot have been considered unfit because he played the Challenger Trophy last week. He cannot have been rested because he is just coming out of a break. The selectors have either begun to look at him as a Test-only prospect or it was his performance in the Champions Trophy that has got him the axe: four wickets and an economy rate of 5.55 in a mostly low-scoring tournament. His economy rate in the West Indies tri-series hovered around the same mark. His career economy rate also stands at over six, and an average of 41.58 doesn't do him any favours.

The seam-bowling replacements, Shami and Unadkat, played all the five ODIs in Zimbabwe, and have been retained. Mohit, who played two of them and was Man of the Match in the first of them, was expected to replace Vinay Kumar, but the Karnataka quick has retained his place. Vinay went at 6.03 in the recently concluded Challenger Trophy, although he did pick up eight wickets in three matches.

Batsmen Karthik, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane, seamer Mohit and spinner Parvez Rasool missed out from the team that played Zimbabwe.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on October 7, 2013, 12:32 GMT

    selection of ambati rayudu ahead of dinesh karthick is not a fair decision otherwise the composition looks good

  • Charudatta on October 7, 2013, 4:13 GMT

    Bowling unit seems sloppy... Ashwin / Jadeja have become very predictable in the bowling, Bhuvneshwar Kumar has Swing as his strength but not sure how it will help him looking at venues... Also pace attack is weak with no bolwer who looks realy threatning...

    Batting line up seems stong on paper: With Raina in great form and Yuvi in middle order with MSD and RJ with role of finishers its strongest middle order currently in ODI cricket. Shikhar and Rohit are in golden touch and are expected to give a flying start to innings...

    Altogather this Indian side looks all set to crush fomidible Aussie side...

  • Sautrik on October 6, 2013, 10:38 GMT

    This is fine, Yuvraj has earned his spot, and thank god Murali Vijay has been dropped. But Karthik should still be in the team and vinay kumar shouldn't. And again, Rohit Sharma has managed to trick the selectors with his tactic of failing for loads of games and performing when his form is in question. I don't understand why so many second chances are given to players like sharma and vinay but hardly any to players like karthik, tiwary and pathan.

  • Dummy4 on October 5, 2013, 14:38 GMT

    The end result is those who perform well will get a chance in the indian squad and that not too in the long run as other competitors are there

  • Dummy4 on October 4, 2013, 23:05 GMT

    Shikhar Dhawan, Unmukt Chand, Virat Kohli, Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Mohit Sharma, Shami Ahmed

    Reserves: Irfan Pathan, Ambati Rayudu, Dinesh Kartik, Ravichandran Ashwin, Rohit Sharma, Praveen Kumar

  • Biswadeep on October 4, 2013, 7:54 GMT

    good selection...waiting for his response...

  • Dummy4 on October 3, 2013, 19:16 GMT

    umesh yadav iz 1 of India's prime weapons when it cumz to Test Cricket!!! da8z y perhaps da selectors 've deliberately dropped him so as to encourage him maintain his own typical wicket-taking\attacking seam position & seam presentation & da hold/grip on primary or secondary seam/leather under da seam & his release n rythm & 2 encourage him 2 pitch da ball up so as to get swing/seam muvment/nip & especially late-swing/deviation & not to mention, 2 encourage him 2 bowl fast & at over 148 Km/hr

  • Dummy4 on October 3, 2013, 17:07 GMT

    i guess the selectors don't wanna break Umesh Yadav's confidence or upset his seam\leather grip/hold & release-rythm & seam movement/ nip/swing & his hostile pace coz wickets here in India r absolute belters & graveyards 4 fast/medium-fast/fast-medium bowlers!!! @Yatinder Kansotia Rohit Sharma iz da most talented ri8-handed batter in da whole world; 've u seen how much tym he has while playing his shots/strokes??!!!!!!!!!! but yep; rohit deserves a Test opportunity!!! Yuvi da champ's scintillating return --- the return of the king; is exhilarating man !!!

  • Al on October 2, 2013, 15:28 GMT

    Yuvraj and Zaheer won the World Cup 2011 for India. They deserve more chances than everybody else.

  • Dummy4 on October 2, 2013, 14:44 GMT

    The thing happened to aussies will repeat for India, like steve waugh , Ganguly ,Dravid found the new talents, like ponting did dhoni is just using the talent found by his predecessor and not giving consistent opportunity to any one new, what happened to Aussie will also happens to us once Dhoni goes off charge.