The national selection committee of the BCCI on Wednesday announced the Test squad for the upcoming five-match Test series against England commencing November 9.
Left-handed batsman Gautam Gambhir has retained his place in the 15-member squad that was named by the national selectors in Mumbai on Wednesday.
Gambhir was called as a replacement for opener KL Rahul in the second Test against New Zealand, when the latter was ruled out due to an injury.
Hardik Pandya will make his Test debut as the all rounder has been named in the Indian squad for the first two Tests. Karun Nair has been retained in the Test squad in the absence of Rohit Sharma, who is battling an injury.
On the other hand, pacer Ishant Sharma also makes a comeback in the squad after recovering from Chikungunya. He was picked for the opening Test against New Zealand at Kanpur but could not play any part in the rubber.
Ishant, along with Amit Mishra, R Ashwin, Mohammad Shami and Umesh Yadav will handle the bowling attack.
KL Rahul and Bhuvneshwar Kumar have not played a single match since they got injured and their match fitness is yet to be proved.
While Rahul is nursing a hamstring strain, Bhuvneshwar is dealing with an ankle injury and it is unlikely that any of the two would get a chance unless they are able to prove match fitness.
Similar is the case of Dhawan, who is nursing a finger injury. India are currently ranked No.1 in the world after thrashing New Zealand 3-0 at home last month. This series though is expected to be a stiffer test for the home side after England beat them 2-1 in 2012 on their previous tour.
Meanwhile, the visiting England squad is scheduled to arrive in this city tomorrow from Bangladesh after drawing the two-Test rubber against the hosts.
They are not scheduled to play any practice game and will have just one practice session on November 5 at the Cricket Club of India before leaving for the venue of the opening Test, Rajkot, according to BCCI sources.
England would depart for Rajkot, ahead of the series opener from November 9-13, either on November 5 evening or the next morning.
The Indian squad is set to assemble in Rajkot, which is to host a first-ever Test, on November 5 evening, BCCI sources added.
The other Tests are slated to be held in Vishakapatnam (Nov 17-21), Mohali (Nov 26-30), Mumbai (Dec 8-12) and Chennai (Dec 16-20).
Squad: Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane, Ishant Sharma, C Pujara, Gautam Gambhir, Jayant yadav, Amit Mishra, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, W Saha (WK), Karun Nair, Murali Vijay, Mohd Shami, Umesh Yadav, Hardik Pandya