England in India 2011-12 September 29, 2011

Harbhajan dropped for first two ODIs

ESPNcricinfo staff

Offspinner Harbhajan Singh has been left out of India's squad for the first two ODIs against England on October 14 and 17. Karnataka medium-pacer S Aravind and Punjab legspinner Rahul Sharma have received their maiden international call-ups.

Fast bowler, Varun Aaron who was part of the ODI squad in England but did not play, retained his place in the 15-man team. Batsmen Ajinkya Rahane and Manoj Tiwary are the other replacements sent to England who kept their spots.

Fast bowler Umesh Yadav, who was not part of the India set-up since the 2010-11 Test series in South Africa, also made a comeback.

The squad is missing Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Munaf Patel and Ishant Sharma due to injuries sustained on the recent tour of England. Fast bowler Ashish Nehra, who had declared himself fit after breaking his hand during the World Cup, and allrounder Yusuf Pathan, who was part of the World Cup squad, were not selected.

India's squad contained five batsmen - Gautam Gambhir, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina and Manoj Tiwary - two wicketkeeper batsmen - MS Dhoni and Parthiv Patel - and one allrounder in Ravindra Jadeja. The bowling attack comprised five seamers - Varun Aaron, Umesh Yadav, Vinay Kumar, S Aravind and Praveen Kumar - and two spinners in R Ashwin and Rahul Sharma.

Harbhajan's axeing came after his disappointing performance during the Test series in England, where he took only two wickets in 69.4 overs at an average of 143.50 and economy-rate of 4.11. He suffered a stomach injury during the second Test and was ruled out of the last two matches and the limited-overs series that followed. India lost the Test series 0-4 and the ODI series 0-3 in England.

Aravind had a strong 2010-11 domestic season; he was the second-highest wicket-taker for Karnataka with 26 scalps and also the second-highest wicket-taker for South Zone in the Duleep Trophy with 10 wickets. He followed that up with an impressive performance for Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL 2011 to push his claims for national recognition. Rahul Sharma also caught notice in the IPL, where he picked up 16 wickets in 14 games for the under-performing Pune Warriors, at the eye-popping economy-rate of 5.46.

This selection meeting in Chennai was the first since the BCCI replaced Yashpal Sharma with Mohinder Amarnath as the North Zone representative on the panel.

Squad: MS Dhoni (capt & wk), Gautam Gambhir, Parthiv Patel, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Varun Aaron, Umesh Yadav, Vinay Kumar, S Aravind, Rahul Sharma, Manoj Tiwary, Praveen Kumar.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on October 1, 2011, 13:16 GMT

    Excellent step by the selectors! So it had now become evident that the selectors want to build a future team for World Cup 2015. And its a bold step towards it and I totally appreciate it! Instead of searching for ghosts of past, its time to look ahead and plan. It would be unfair to expect the new team to register win immediately, because time is needed to gel well and settle down as a team and to work out combination. Good decision to oust players with bad form. The selectors are intelligent enough not to melt by past records but by current form. This is a big step guys! It will help create bench strength! Go Young India! All the debutants, Grab the opportunity with both hands like Ajinkya did in England and his presence in squad is justified.

  • dummy4fb on October 1, 2011, 9:18 GMT

    Y nt consider Rajat Bhatia,he is a gud allrounder n is 31 and can play for atleast 4 years.His first class batting avg is 47 higher than raina and list A batting average of 35 which is v.gud considering the way he bats much lower down the order.and we all knw he is a gud bowler as suggested by Ipl and first class bowling average of 29 only.We keep crying 4 Irfan who hasnt played cricket except Ipl for over an year.The talent of Murali Kartik was wasted n we r nw doin same 4 Bhatia and Ojha.Bhatia is anyday better bowler and batsman than Jaddu/Vinay who keep getting chances.

  • awalia on October 1, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    Lets talk about the form of Harbhajan in recent past ,Selectors is it fair to make it Jan 2010 till date? Oh my God !!! He is out of Form Still He is the most Economical Indian Bowler. How Poor the knowldge of Selectors is, Bowling in Power Plays, What else you want from a bowler 23 Matches 26 Wickets Economy 4.4. Mr. Shrikant in ODI's Runs Count not the Wickets, i can only hope after two defeats they will understand

  • ks1959 on October 1, 2011, 8:11 GMT

    Selection of players should be purely on basis of current form. In view of this, excliusion of Harbhajan is a correct and bold decision. He should also have been forced to play for the Rest of India team in Irani Trophy to prove his mettle. But when money minting tournaments like IPL or Champions Leage are there, who cares for the poor Domestic Tournaments?. Selection of Vinay Kumar should prove to be totally incorrect as he has never appeared to be a bowler of International class. Some Regional bias must be working in his favour. In his place, Nehra shuould have been considered on two counts A. Regaining of fitness B. Absence of a quality left hand pacer like Zaheer. I also feel that Ojha too deserves more chances.

  • bobkhanrd on October 1, 2011, 7:48 GMT

    Team announcement for Eng ODI series is a desperate attempt to lose the series. We have taken 32 years from 1974 to 2006 to overtake them in Head to Head. Pls do not play for formalities. Play to win. FIrst place whats the need to play another ODI series after playing a full series with the same oppenent and drubbed.

  • awalia on October 1, 2011, 7:31 GMT

    Needs minimum one good reason to drop Bhajji. I am still looking for that reason. Forget England where he is not included or out of the ream due to injury or so. look at West indies (11 wickets in Tests & 6 Wickets in 3 ODI's remamber india wins only those 3 ODI's), Look at south Africa tour Highest wickets 15 in 3 tests, World cup Economy rate is 4.5 with 10 wickets considering that his roe is to stop runs, let the wickets falls on the other end due to the pressure generated by him. Pl do remamber India has lost 7 matches in a row in which he was not playing. What is the thought process of Selectors i am not able to understand

  • CijoAntony on October 1, 2011, 6:52 GMT

    This is the brilliant decesion in the history of Indian Cricket.Appreicate the courage of selectors...!!

  • shahid_0070 on October 1, 2011, 6:07 GMT

    it is a great decision taken by the selectors by dropping bajji and he does well for his ipl team but performs worse for the Indian team.And i dont think y the selectors forgot to include robin utthappa, he got experience, can bat at any order, can keep wickets as well, hard hitter.....

  • dummy4fb on October 1, 2011, 6:05 GMT

    just 1 simple question, why vinay kumar,varun aaron, umesh yadav and arvind and why not nehra, irfan pathan, balaji and ajit agarkar?

  • Rajesh.Kumar on October 1, 2011, 6:01 GMT

    I think it is extremely silly of selectors to drop Harbhajan for ODIs being played in India, due to his lack of wickets in Caribbean and England. Even Swann was not able to achieve much in the first three tests in England, so how can we expect Harbhajan to be successful there. Swann was successful only in the last test played in Oval, where finally a turning track was available. But by that time Harbhajan had left. Bhajji is a class performer on Indian tracks, as is quite clear from his performance in the ongoing CLT20. Nevertheless, what is done is done, and I sincerely hope that the newly selected spinners perform, or else we are looking at yet another whitewash.

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