Sehwag, Gambhir, Zaheer to play West Indies A
Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Zaheer Khan have been picked to represent India A in two four-day games against West Indies A later this month. Gambhir and Zaheer were dropped from the Test side late last year, and Sehwag last played a Test in March. All three were ignored for subsequent A squads, but this call-up - coming just before the start of a fresh season - will give them hope for a national comeback. Also back in the fold was the 32-year-old Mohammad Kaif, who last played a Test in 2006.
These matches clash with the Champions League T20, which could have played a part in some or all of these selections. Missing from the India A four-day side that toured South Africa last month are M Vijay, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Ambati Rayudu, Shikhar Dhawan and Wriddhiman Saha, who will all be playing in the Champions League T20.
Yuvraj Singh, who was dropped for the Champions Trophy and the tri-series in the West Indies, was chosen to lead the one-day side against West Indies A, and also India Blue in the Challenger Trophy, the domestic season opener. Irfan Pathan was picked to lead India Red. Delhi are the third side in the tournament by the virtue of being defending Ranji Trophy one-day champions, and are expected to pick their team and coach soon.
Zaheer and Yuvraj have spent the time outside international cricket working on their fitness in France. Not picked for the A sides, Gambhir represented Essex in county cricket.
India A squad for the first four-day game: Cheteshwar Pujara (capt), Jiwanjot Singh, KL Rahul, Manpreet Juneja, Rajat Paliwal, Harshad Khadiwale, Parvez Rasool, Bhargav Bhatt, Ishwar Pandey, Mohammed Shami, Ashok Dinda, Rohit Motwani (wk), Dhawal Kulkarni, Paras Dogra
India A squad for the second and third four-day games: Cheteshwar Pujara (capt), Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Sheldon Jackson, Abhishek Nayar, Paras Dogra, Uday Kaul (wk), Parvez Rasool, Bhargav Bhatt, Dhawal Kulkarni, Zaheer Khan, Ishwar Pandey, Mohammed Shami, Mohammad Kaif
India A squad for the three 50-over games and one T20: Yuvraj Singh (capt), Unmukt Chand, Robin Uthappa, B Aparajith, Kedar Jadhav, Naman Ojha (wk), Yusuf Pathan, Irfan Pathan, Jaydev Unadkat, Praveen Kumar, Sumit Narwal, Shahbaz Nadeem, Mandeep Singh, Rahul Sharma
India Red squad for the Challenger Trophy: Irfan Pathan (capt), Robin Uthappa, Abhinav Mukund, Saurabh Tiwary, Gurkeerat Mann, Kedar Jadhav, Smit Patel (wk), Yusuf Pathan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Abhimanyu Mithun, Umesh Yadav, Suraj Yadav
India Blue squad for the Challenger Trophy: Yuvraj Singh (capt), Akshath Reddy, Naman Ojha (wk), Sibsankar Roy*, Ankit Bawne, Abhishek Nayar, Manish Pandey, Piyush Chawla, Ankit Rajpoot, Vinay Kumar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Iresh Saxena
September 23, 2013, 0950 GMT: Sibsankar Roy was named the replacement for Mandeep Singh, who was ruled out of action for three-four weeks due to a finger injury