Virat Kohli rested, Rohit Sharma will lead India in Asia Cup

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Colombo: India's Virat Kohli along with Rohit Sharma celebrates his century against Sri Lanka during the 4th ODI match in Colombo on Thursday. PTI Photo by Manvender Vashist (PTI8_31_2017_000142B)

India have rested their captain Virat Kohli from the Asia Cup, which will be held in the UAE from September 15 to 28. Rohit Sharma will lead the side in his absence, with Shikhar Dhawan named his deputy.

India are currently playing a five-Test series in England, which ends on September 11, four days before the start of the Asia Cup. The Test team will be back in action on October 4 – less than a week after the Asia Cup final – when they begin their first Test against West Indies in Rajkot. Given the tightly packed schedule, and the tour of Australia that will follow the series against West Indies, the selectors have chosen to rest Kohli.

The squad is otherwise at full strength, with the selectors not opting to rest Dhawan, KL Rahul, Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya and Bumrah, who are all involved in the Test series in England.

There is one new face in the squad in Khaleel Ahmed, the left-arm seamer from Rajasthan. The 20-year-old has only played two first-class matches, but has more experience in List A and T20 cricket, having played a combined 29 games across the two shorter formats. He was part of the India A limited-overs squad that toured England in June-July, and also played for India A in the recently concluded 50-overs quadrangular series in Bengaluru.

Khaleel has taken 15 wickets in his last nine limited-overs matches for India A, and has not gone wicketless in any of these matches.

The middle-order trio of Ambati RayuduManish Pandey and Kedar Jadhav, are back after missing India’s last ODI series in England, as well as for Jasprit Bumrah, who sat out that series to recover from a thumb injury. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has just returned to action after recovering from a back issue, is also part of the squad.

Of those who were part of the ODI squad in England, batsmen Shreyas Iyer and Suresh Raina and fast bowlers Siddarth Kaul and Umesh Yadav have misssed out on selection.

India squad: Rohit Sharma (capt), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (wk), Dinesh Karthk, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Khaleel Ahmed, Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah

In: Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Khaleel Ahmed, Jasprit Bumrah
Out: Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Siddarth Kaul, Suresh Raina, Umesh Yadav

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