The All-India Senior Selection Committee in consultation with the Indian team management has decided to rest India’s star all-rounder Hardik Pandya for the upcoming three-match Test series against Sri Lanka, confirmed BCCI through a press release on Friday evening. Pandya was a part of the squad for the first two Tests. Having made his Test debut against the same opposition, the Baroda all-rounder must have been looking forward to this series but the board doesn’t want to take any risks with his injury, given India’s busy schedule. “Considering Mr Pandya’s heavy recent workload, the decision was made to negate any possibility of a major injury concern. Mr Pandya will undergo a period of strength at conditioning at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru,” the statement from BCCI read.
Pandya got injured while trying to stop a cracker of a shot from Colin de Grandhomme in the last T20 against New Zealand at Thiruvananthapuram. Despite that, he went on to bowl the last over and won the match for the team. He has been in good form with the bat lately as well. BCCI hasn’t announced any replacement for the series.
Meanwhile, the All-India Senior Selection Committee has named Sanju Samson as captain of the Board President’s XI for the warm-up match against Sri Lanka after Naman Ojha was ruled out due to injury. Punjab’s batsman Anmolpreet Singh who has been in brilliant form in the ongoing Ranji Trophy has been added to the squad as a replacement.
India Test squad for the first two Tests: Virat Kohli (Captain), KL Rahul, M Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (Vice-Captain), Rohit Sharma, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma.
Board President’s XI squad: Sanju Samson (C) (WK), Jiwanjot Singh, B Sandeep, Tanmay Agarwal, Abhishek Gupta, Rohan Prem, Akash Bhandari, Jalaj Saxena, Chama Milind, Avesh Khan, Sandeep Warrier, Ravi Kiran, Anmolpreet Singh.