The All India senior selection committee met in Mumbai to select the Indian team for the six-match ODI series against South Africa. Virat Kohli will lead the pack as usual as he gets back from his well-deserved break after being excluded from the remainder of the Sri Lanka tour after helping Team India win the Test series 1-0 (two matches drawn). Rohit Sharma led the cavalry and won his maiden ODI series as skipper and will aim to clean sweep the T20I series as well. R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were again left out of the ODI squad as Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel make the cut.
Mohammed Shami and Shardul Thakur's inclusion in the shorter format of the game sees the management sending in the seamers as pace is required on bouncy tracks in SA. Normally Shami is kept in reserve for the Test squad but it seems like the Men in Blue want to go with all guns blazing in the six-match ODI series.
Shreyas Iyer's inclusion comes as no surprise after his smashing performances in the ODI series against Sri Lanka. His 88 runs against the neighbours in the 2nd ODI was highly impressive as he and Rohit Sharma thrashed the Lankans in Mohali where the in-stand skipper made his third double-hundred. Iyer made his maiden fifty in One Day Internationals and was close to the three-mark figure but fell short of 12 runs.
Kedhar Jadhav makes his return to the squad after being sidelined for the ODI series against Sri Lanka due to injury. It was young Washington Sundar who received his maiden call-up in place of injured Jadhav.
Veteran stars such as Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina were also ignored despite clearing the Yo-Yo test recently.
The spinners include the usual lot of Chahal, Yadav and Axar Patel. Ashwin and Jadeja who are included in the Test squad will not be sporting the blue jersey anytime soon as the spin duo of Chahal and Yadav has just been phenomenal. Jasprit Bumrah received his maiden call-up for Test cricket as India play three matches with the red ball.
India play their first ODI on February 1 in Kingsmead, Durban.
Team India Squad for ODI series against South Africa:
Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma (VC), Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (WK), Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur.