India have rested their captain Virat Kohli for the upcoming Asia Cup. The selectors announced India’s squad for Asia Cup on Saturday. In Kohli’s absence, Rohit Sharma will lead the side. Shikhar Dhawan has been named Rohit Sharma’s deputy.

The selectors have also recalled Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav and Manish Pandey in addition to including uncapped Khaleel Ahmed.

Rayudu was picked in the ODI squad for the last series in England too after a stunning performance in the Indian Premier League. He played an integral role in Chennai Super Kings’ (CSK) title-winning run this year. In fact, Rayudu had the best IPL with the bat, as he amassed 602 runs at a strike rate of 149.75 including one century.

India Rest Virat Kohli For Asia Cup 2018, Recall Ambati Rayudu
India’s squad for the Asia Cup (Credits: AFP)

However, he got dropped from the squad after failing to clear the mandatory yo-yo test. Rayudu placed last of his 34 ODIs in 2016 during the tour of Zimbabwe.

On the other hand, Pandey lost his place in the ODI team after the series in South Africa earlier this year, He earned the recall after leading India B to title in the Quadrangular series. He scored 306 runs in 4 innings with the help of 1 century and two fifties.

India Rest Virat Kohli For Asia Cup 2018, Recall Ambati Rayudu
India’s squad for the Asia Cup (Credits: BCCI)

The notable absentees are Suresh Raina, Umesh Yadav and Siddarth Kaul. The trio was a part of the team for the series in England but lost their spots for the upcoming event. Mayank Agarwal also missed out once again despite scoring heavily.

Asia Cup 2018:

United Arabia Emirates will host the 14th edition of the Asia Cup. This will be the third time, the United Arabia Emirates will host the tournament, having previously hosted it in 1984 and 1995.

The opening game of the competition will see Bangladesh and Sri Lanka fighting it out on September 15.  Defending champions India, on the other hand, would start their campaign three days later against the winner of the Asia Cup qualifiers. On the very next day, they will take on arch-rivals Pakistan in a mouth watering clash.

India Rest Virat Kohli For Asia Cup 2018, Recall Ambati Rayudu
Rohit Sharma will lead India in Kohli’s absence (Credits: Getty)

The most successful teams of the Asia Cup are India and Sri Lanka. Both the teams have won the ODI-format five times each. Pakistan are second in the list with two titles. India have won the only T20I-format competition in 2016.

Overall, India is the best and the most successful team in the tournament having won it 6 times (5 times in ODI format and once in the T20 format).

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

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