Ashwin, Iyer to lead Deodhar Trophy squads

R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja walk back at stumps AFP

A day after being named Kings XI Punjab's captain, R Ashwin has been given the leadership of another team. The BCCI selection committee has named the India spinner captain of the India A side that will compete against Karnataka - who, on Tuesday, won the Vijay Hazare Trophy - and India B in the 50-overs Deodhar Trophy from March 4 to 8 in Dharamsala. India middle-order batsman Shreyas Iyer will lead the India B side.

Test fast bowlers Mohammed Shami (India A) and Umesh Yadav (India B) have also found places in the Deodhar Trophy squads. Shami has not played any cricket since the third Test against South Africa in Johannesburg while Umesh, who featured in the Vijay Hazare Trophy for Vidarbha, sat out all three Tests in South Africa, having slipped behind newcomer Jasprit Bumrah in the fast-bowling pecking order.

Other notable selections in the Deodhar Trophy squads include the top-order pair of Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill (both India A), who were part of India's victorious Under-19 World Cup campaign in New Zealand, spin-bowling allrounder Jayant Yadav, who played for India in the 2016-17 home season (India B), fast bowlers Siddarth Kaul (India B) and Navdeep Saini (India A), who have been on the India selectors' radar recently, and wicketkeepers Ishan Kishan (India A) and KS Bharat (India B).

Shaw, Jayant, Kaul, Saini and Bharat have also found places in the Rest of India side that will face Ranji Trophy champions Vidarbha in the first-class Irani Cup match from March 14 to 18 in Nagpur. Karun Nair will lead the side, which also includes his Karnataka team-mate Mayank Agarwal, who has scored over 2000 runs in this domestic season, and the India allrounder Ravindra Jadeja.

Jadeja did not play any of the three Tests in South Africa, and has been out of India's limited-overs sides since July 2017. He played for Saurashtra in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, but a side strain prevented him from bowling in their last three matches. Given the two-week break before the Irani Cup, he should be able to recover fully and resume bowling duties.

India A (Deodhar Trophy): R Ashwin (capt), Prithvi Shaw, Unmukt Chand, Akshdeep Nath, Shubman Gill, Ricky Bhui, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan (wk), Krunal Pandya, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Basil Thampi, Kulwant Khejroliya, Amandeep Khare, Rohit Rayudu

India B (Deodhar Trophy): Shreyas Iyer (capt), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Ankit Bawne, Manoj Tiwary, Siddhesh Lad, KS Bharat (wk), Jayant Yadav, Dharmendrasinh Jadeja, Hanuma Vihari, Siddarth Kaul, Khaleel Ahmed, Harshal Patel, Umesh Yadav, Rajat Patidar

Rest of India (Irani Cup): Karun Nair (capt), Prithvi Shaw, Abhimanyu Easwaran, R Samarth, Mayank Agwarwal, Hanuma Vihari, KS Bharat (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Jayant Yadav, Shahbaz Nadeem, Anmolpreet Singh, Siddarth Kaul, Ankit Rajpoot, Navdeep Saini, Atit Sheth