India in West Indies 2009 June 17, 2009

Tendulkar and Zaheer rested for West Indies tour

Cricinfo staff
65

Top Curve
India's squad to West Indies
  • MS Dhoni (capt/wk), Yuvraj Singh, Gautam Gambhir, Rohit Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, Pragyan Ojha, Yusuf Pathan, M Vijay, S Badrinath, RP Singh, Praveen Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Abhishek Nayar, Ashish Nehra, Ravindra Jadeja, Dinesh Karthik.
  • Out
  • Sachin Tendulkar (finger injury), Zaheer Khan (shoulder injury), Virender Sehwag (shoulder injury), Suresh Raina (hairline fracture of the thumb), Munaf Patel, Irfan Pathan
  • In
  • Ashish Nehra, Abhishek Nayar, RP Singh, Ravindra Jadeja, S Badrinath, M Vijay
Bottom Curve

As expected, injuries and fatigue concerns mean India will be four short of their first-choice squad for the four ODIs in the West Indies. While Virender Sehwag (shoulder injury) and Suresh Raina (hairline fracture on the thumb) were rendered unavailable, Sachin Tendulkar opted to rest due to a finger injury picked up during the IPL and Zaheer Khan, recovering from his shoulder injury, was given some rest. The selectors, who met via a teleconference between Mumbai and England, also dropped Munaf Patel and Irfan Pathan, who went to New Zealand as part of the 16-man ODI squad.

M Vijay, India's third opener in Tests, took Sehwag's place. Ashish Nehra, who did well for Delhi Daredevils in the IPL, returns after a four-year absence, and RP Singh, another bowler making a comeback through the IPL, replaced Munaf. Raina's place went to Chennai Super Kings team-mate S Badrinath. The vacancies created by Tendulkar and Irfan were filled by allrounders Ravindra Jadeja and Abhishek Nayar.

This selection committee was handed a mostly settled team, and this is the first time in their tenure that they have had to make so many decisions. Most of it, coming on the heels of an ordinary World Twenty20, is necessitated by injuries. The make-up of the newcomers to the squad suggests equal importance was given to performances in traditional domestic cricket, and in the IPL. If Nehra, who missed of the domestic season, is selected on the back of his performances in South Africa (19 wickets, economy-rate of 7.68), Badrinath and Vijay have been in contention for quite a while, thanks to their performances in the Ranji Trophy. Vijay is the opener in a more conventional sense, and will free Rohit Sharma for his usual middle-order role. Virat Kohli and Manish Pandey, other candidates for the batting slots, won't have much to complain about at this point.

This selection is also an important show of faith for Ravindra Jadeja, who drew a lot of flak for his 35-ball 25 in the game that India got knocked out of the World Twenty20. Nayar has been a consistent performer for Mumbai in both forms of Ranji Trophy, and showed glimpses of his ability during the IPL too. The biggest success stories from the IPL, though, are Nehra and RP.

But more interesting are the choices that the selectors made, not the ones they were forced to make. Munaf and Irfan were dropped from what has been a successful ODI side, and that should worry them. Munaf's form veered from the effective to the ordinary during the ODIs and the Tests in New Zealand, and accordingly he was not taken to England despite his impressive work for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL. Munaf's Test spot will also be on the line, especially if RP starts doing well. Irfan, though, played in the World Twenty20 but was not included in the final XIs for India's last two games.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • sandy on June 24, 2009, 5:47 GMT

    surprised to see nayar ahead of virat kohli who performed well in the tour of srilanka as a opener...he has the credits to be picked as a reserve middle order bat with his runs in the domstic one dayers.

  • Kartik on June 22, 2009, 16:10 GMT

    I cannot believe that people commenting below thought that Manish Pandey should be included. Did anyone bother checking his stats in domestic cricket? He isnt even a regular yet in the Karnataka Ranji team and was comtemplating a cereer in the army if he continues to be on the sidelines. He is good, but is still a work in progress. In any case the opener for this series is only a stop-gap solution while Sehwag recovers, so it is sensible to pick an opener who is in form rather than think of investing in the future. Vijay has been the most consistent opener in the Ranji Trophy in the last season. His Test match debut against Australia showed that he is a genuine test-class opener of international caliber.

  • Deepak on June 20, 2009, 23:25 GMT

    I think Manish Pandey deserves a chance ahead of Ravindra Jadeja. Manish has done enough to prove that he deserves a chance in the playing 11. Jadeja's batting was one of the reason why India was out of the World T20 cricket. This guy from my point of view cannot handle pressure or clear the ropes at will.

  • Syed Ahmed on June 19, 2009, 8:19 GMT

    I really dont agree with this team..i dont know how can Irfan Pathan be dropped...He didnt perform that bad in the T-20 World Cup and he wasnt given a chance after the west indies match in the super-8's in which he was the best indian bowler on that day and he has batted better than most of the Indian batsmen on the tour..this is a bad ommision...and i cant figure out how come Munaf Patel missed out..he has been India's third best seamer for the last year and bowled some exceptional spells in the IPL even this according to me is a bad omission and Mr.Srikanth, I can think that Badrinath is not a bad choice but the inclusion of Vijay really beats me so Mr.Srikanth i dont think this is the right selection.

  • Andy on June 18, 2009, 23:00 GMT

    The cheif selctor is doing a very good job. I am really impressed with the way he picks up the team.

    Bringing in Badrinath is a wonderful things he did.

    And Irfan Pathan is out of team, thats a good omission. He has been a lousy player, he doesn't beleive himself. I hope we won't see him again in team.

    Dinesh Karthik, is a good call.

    But Mr. Srikanth should do something out of box. Drop Dhoni, he is not even a ordinary batsman with skills, you can fill with Dinesh Karthik, he is the much much better chois as wk/batsman.

    Make Badri as ODI captain. He has lot of experience than anyone in the team at present.

    You don't need Jadeja when you have Yusuf Pathan.

    Othen than that, Mr. Srikanth did a wonderful job.

    Andy Turks & Caicos Islands.

  • Prashant on June 18, 2009, 16:21 GMT

    Manish Pandey is also an available choice.. the youngester has proved enough to be included in the team ahead of Vija.. the young man could be a potential replacement for sehwag.. even if it is until he recovers.. putting faith.. anyhow we expect that even if jadeja is in the team I would not be surpeised if he sits on the bench for the tournament.. in such case manish pandey can be a handy bench man

  • R on June 18, 2009, 12:03 GMT

    There needs to be more forward looking. Virat Kohli & Manish Pandey were logical choices ahead of Vijay. Again Badri is a good batsman but we need to blood in youngsters keeping 2011 world cup in mind. The selectors / team management also need to think different as both Sachin & Viru will be missing. We need attacking batsmen at top - may be Yousuf Pathan should be tried in that role. We were knocked out of T20 due to poor and slow starts - Sehwag's absence was clearly a factor- and we need firepower at top of order.

  • Darshan on June 18, 2009, 10:17 GMT

    im not particularly sure how peopld will react to this but taking laxman could have been a good gamble as he is the best indian batsmen against short bowling! Have a look at his record against the kings of short bowling, australia in australia! Although i understand he's not perfectly suited for this form of the game but it wouldnt have been a bad idea 2 try him out. ishant should have definetly been rested but a tour of west indies could be invaluable at his age. Ashish nehra doest really have a future in the international team as he is too expensive as a bowler and personaly i would make this his last chance. i would rather have shreeshanth as he offers more as a bowler.

  • sharath on June 18, 2009, 9:50 GMT

    What a joke our selection committee is...here we go again...Is it coincidence or what that you always include new players from the same state as that of the chief selector? Can some one here justify M Vijay's place over Manish Pandey...who looked so good in the IPL, also isn't it the right time to rope in a young batsman like Manish.

    Badrinath - we all have witnessed his game previously also in IPL a very mediocre player, whose is also reaching 30...if the selectors have gone with the domestic circuit records...then I am not sure what is wrong with CA Pujara (may be the selector is not from Saurashtra)

    The day when this regionalism is driven out from our country, may be then we will see the true players been awarded with the prestigious India cap

  • Pranav on June 18, 2009, 9:39 GMT

    i am really happy that badri is in the team.he has been a consistent performer at the domestic level.

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