Tendulkar, Zaheer rested; Nehra back after four years

June 17th, 2009 - 7:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Sachin Tendulkar Mumbai, June 17 (IANS) Sachin Tendulkar and Zaheer Khan have been rested while left-arm pacer Ashish Nehra has returned to the India squad for the four one-dayers in the West Indies.
The 16-member squad was announced Wednesday after a teleconference between chairman of selectors Krishnamachari Srikkanth, his colleague Raja Venkat, coach Gary Kirsten and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who were in England, and other three selectors Yashpal Sharma, Narendra Hirwani and Surendra Bhave who assembled at the Cricket Centre in Mumbai. Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India N. Srinivasan convened the meeting from England.

Nehra was rewarded for his impressive showing for Delhi Daredevils in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in South Africa. He was the third highest wicket-taker with 19 wickets from 13 matches.

The only new face in the squad is Mumbai all-rounder Abhishek Nayar, a consistent performer in domestic cricket who narrowly failed to make it to the World Twenty20.

Zaheer, 30, who had taken a huge workload by spearheading the bowling attack in the last three months, was rested while Tendulkar, 36, also sought rest because of a finger injury.

Suresh Raina and Irfan Pathan, who were in the squad for the World Twenty20, were not considered. Raina fractured his thumb during the World Twenty20 and was advised two weeks’ rest while Pathan failed to impress the selectors.

Munaf Patel, who was in all the three squads on the tour of New Zealand in March-April, gave way to Rudra Pratap Singh, the highest wicket-taker for champion Deccan Chargers in the IPL.

In place of Tendulkar and injured Virender Sehwag, the selectors picked two Tamil Nadu batsmen Murali Vijay and Subramaniam Badrinath.

Dinesh Karthik, who was in all three squads in New Zealand, retained his place as in-form batsman and second wicketkeeper after his consistent batting for Delhi Daredevils in the middle order.

In West Indies, the first two matches will be played in Kingston June 26 and 28, while Gros Islet hosts the last two July 3 and 5.

The squad:

Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain/wicketkeeper), Yuvraj Singh (vice-captain), Gautam Gambhir, Dinesh Karthik (wicketkeeper), Rohit Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, Pragyan Ojha, Yusuf Pathan, Murali Vijay, S. Badrinath, R.P. Singh, Praveen Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Abhishek Nayar, Ashish Nehra and Ravindra Jadeja.

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