The All-India Senior Selection Committee on September 13 (Thursday) picked the squad for the upcoming three-match Test series against South Africa. The squad rang a few eyeballs with the omission of dynamic all-rounder Hardik Pandya from the series starting from October 2.
The young all-rounder was out of the side for the series against West Indies. Pandya copped up a few blows during the World Cup and the selection panel headed by MSK Prasad decided to rest him from the series against the Caribbeans.
Hardik Pandya worked on his fitness and recovered on time to be in the T20I squad which commences from September 15. Many thought he will return to the Test side as the seaming all-rounder but the selectors thought differently.
Chairman of the selectors MSK Prasad revealed that there is no need for a seaming all-rounder. Hence, Hardik Pandya didn’t find a place in the squad for the series. Instead, the selectors went in with three spinners keeping in the mind the condition of the wicket. The selectors also considered managing the workload as Pandya plays in all the formats.
“We did not feel the need for a seam-bowling all-rounder for home series,” said MSK Prasad. “Yes, he plays ODIs and T20Is, so it’s a combination of both,” Prasad added.
Meanwhile, India made two changes from the Test squad for the series against West Indies. Shubman Gill earned a maiden Test call in place of KL Rahul while Kuldeep Yadav came in for the fast bowler Umesh Yadav.
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Visakhapatnam will host the first Test starting from October 2 while the second and third Test will take place in Pune and Ranchi respectively.