Consistency earns Samson, Karn tickets for England ODIs
Young Kerala wicketkeeper-batsman Sanju Samson and Railways leg spinner Karn Shama are the new faces in India’s squad for the One-Day International series against England.
However, there was no place for Cheteshwar Pujara, who was in the squad for the preceding series against Bangladesh, and seasoned campaigners Yuvraj Singh, Gautam Gambhir, Ishant Sharma and Harbhajan Singh.
Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Mohammad Shami, who were all rested for the Bangladesh series considering the arduous tour of England that followed, are all back in the squad.
India will play five ODIs and a one-off Twenty20 international after the ongoing five-Test series.
The selection panel, headed by Sandeep Patil, discussed the composition of the squad with captain Dhoni and coach Duncan Fletcher through video conference before finalising it.
The team has two all-rounders in Stuart Binny and Jadeja and two specialist spinners in Ashwin and Karn.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami, Umesh Yadav, Mohit Sharma and Dhawal Kulkarni form the five-man pace attack.
Kohli, Dhawan, Rohit, Suresh Raina, Ajinkya Rahane and Ambati Rayudu are the specialist batsmen while Dhoni and Samson the two wicket-keepers.
Considering the World Cup, the emphasis was laid on including the young players; that is why players such as Sanju Samson, Karn Sharma, Mohit Sharma and Stuart Binny are there in the team," Board of Control for Cricket in India secretary Sanjay Patel told reporters, after the selection committee met in Mumbai on Tuesday evening.
Patel also informed that spinner Amit Mishra was not considered because of a back injury.
The 19-year-old Samson and 26-year-old Karn were rewarded for consistent performances in the domestic circuit as well as India ‘A’ engagements.
Samson was highest run-getter for India ‘A’ in the team's recent Quadrangular series triumph in Australia.
The diminutive batsman scored 244 runs, at an average of 81.33, in seven matches.
Kulkarni also forced his way to the team with a consistent showing Down Under. He was the most successful bowler of the Quadrangular series with 14 wickets, which included a five-wicket haul.
Mohit, who has already played eight ODIs for India, took eight wickets in that series.
Yuvraj Singh, who was in the second-string team which toured Bangladesh under Raina's captaincy, was ignored and so was Ishant, who is part of India's Test squad in the ongoing series in England.
The first ODI is on August 25 at Bristol while Cardiff (August 27), Nottingham (August 30), Birmingham (September 2) and Headingley (September 5) will host the other matches.
The lone Twenty20 is on September 7 in Birmingham.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Virat Kohli (vice-captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Stuart Binny, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Mohit Sharma, Ambati Rayudu, Umesh Yadav, Dhawal Kulkarni, Sanju Samson, Karn Sharma.