All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and batsman Hanuma Vihari made a return as the BCCI on Friday picked India's squad for the inaugural ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final and the five-match Test series against England. Both Jadeja and Vihari had suffered injuries during the Australia tour earlier this year.
KL Rahul, who underwent surgery after being diagnosed with appendicitis, and Wriddhiman Saha, who tested positive for COVID-19 before the suspension of IPL 2021, have also been included in the squad subject to their fitness. Hardik Pandya, Navdeep Saini, and Kuldeep Yadav, on the other hand, have been overlooked.
The selectors have also picked four standby players -- Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, and Arzan Nagwaswalla.
The England series will start at Nottingham (Aug 4-8) and will be followed by matches at Lord's (August 12-16), Leeds (Aug 25-29), Oval (Sep 2-6) and Manchester (Sep 10-14).
Prior to the five-Test series, India will take on New Zealand in the final of the ICC World Test Championship starting June 18.
The BCCI had initially planned to name the squad in June, days after the final of the now-suspended IPL 2021 on May 30th. However, multiple COVID-19 positive cases in the bio-bubble led to the postponement of the lucrative T20 league.
India’s squad: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (Captain), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohd. Shami, Md. Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav, KL Rahul (subject to fitness clearance), Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper; subject to fitness clearance).
Standby players: Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Arzan Nagwaswalla