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Revealed: Why Indian Selectors Opted For the Experienced Ashish Nehra

India defeated Australia in the final ODI in Nagpur by seven wickets to complete a 4-0 thumping and climb up to the top of the ICC rankings, dethroning South Africa.

Soon after the series win, All India Senior Selection Committee announced Indian squad for the three-match T20I series. There were a total of three comebacks but the only eye-raiser was the selection of veteran India fast bowler Ashish Nehra.

The left-handed fast bowler last played for India earlier this year, in the last T20I against England which India won 2-1. Another left-hander from Delhi is back into the team, in Shikhar Dhawan, whereas wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik is also recalled after being dropped from the squad for the recently concluded Australian series.

38-year old’s inclusion into the side may have caught few eyes, but he has performed well in the past, in his 25 games have picked up 34 wickets.

“Ashish Nehra played the last full T20 series against England earlier this year. He was in contention to play Champions Trophy but an injury during IPL put paid to his hopes. India’s last two T20s were one-off games against West Indies and Sri Lanka, so Ashish wasn’t picked,” a BCCI official spoke on selection matters told PTI on condition of anonymity.

The official added that, Ashish was set for a comeback into the team but an injury in the IPL put an end to his chances.

“Ashish if fit was due for a comeback as and when there would have been a three-match T20 series. There isn’t anyone craftier than Ashish and when it comes to his selection, it’s about fitness and not form. Check records, Ashish has never been dropped because of poor form,” the official added.

Here’s the Indian squad for three T20Is against Australia:

Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma (vice-captain), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ashish Nehra, Axar Patel.


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