After much speculations over team India pulling out of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017, owing to a financial dispute between BCCI (Board Of Cricket Control For India) & ICC (International Cricket Council), the squad has been at last announced.
The selectors’ panel held their proceedings today at the BCCI headquarters, following the reconciliation between BCCI & ICC on Sunday’s meet, where it was unanimously expressed that India would certainly have a go ahead on its title defending.
BCCI delayed announcing India’s pool of players because of objections that a proposed ICC financial formula would result in a loss of approximately $277 million from 2016 to 2023 to sports’ richest board.
Rohit Sharma & Mohammad Shami have returned to the squad. This will be Rohit’s first international assignment since October, when he sustained a thigh injury during the ODI series against New Zealand.
During the ongoing IPL, he has scored 183 runs in 10 innings for Mumbai Indians, the first team to qualify for the play-offs.
Whereas, Bengal pacer Shami has not played an ODI since the 2015 World Cup semi-final, sustaining an injury & now slots in as the fifth pace-bowling option behind Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav and Hardik Pandya.
It can be argued that two wickets in five IPL games is no great shakes, but Shami has had the selectors’ faith ever since he returned to international cricket last July after a long gap.
From the last ODI series that India played against England at home in January, Amit Mishra was dropped for Shami and Rohit back to open the innings with KL Rahul ruled out of the tournament as he recovers from shoulder surgery.
While naming the squad, the chairman of the selection committee MSK Prasad stated that the other vital players discussed at the length of the selection committee – Suresh Raina, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Kuldeep Yadav & Shardul Thakur have been placed as standbys for the tournament.
Being surprised, it has been hard for the Indian Cricket fans to gulp the deprivation of Raina from the mainstream berth, as the Gujarat Lions’ skipper hold a solid performance record in the ongoing IPL (Indian Premier League).
Protests were also raised in the social media about the ignorance on Kolkata Knight Riders’ captain Gautam Gambhir, who statistically stood strong for a national comeback, but unfortunately fell victimized to the automated choice of the selection over Shikhar Dhawan.
Another senior teammate Ashish Nehra faced the exclusion too, who previously held the resolution of calling it off from the national duty after posting a successful Champions Trophy outing.
About the eye-catching fresh-blooded talent Rishabh Pant, Chairman Prasad asserted, ”Pant heavily deserved a berth, considering his brilliant performance in the ongoing IPL, but the combination balancing keeps him under a certain hold at the moment. We will definitely go on grooming him over the years.”
The eight-team tournament will be played between June 1-18, with defending champion India pooled with South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka in Group B. Kohli’s team is scheduled to open its contentions on June 4 at the Edgbaston against arch-rival Pakistan.
Although amazed about the selections’ not so relying upon the IPL 2017 performances, but the Indian supporters are finally relieved to be assured about their national team’s contending confirmation & hopes of the aftermath turning out to be real fruitful for Team India are high.
INDIA Squad : Virat Kohli (Captain), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Wicket-Keeper), Yuvaraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Kedar Jadhav, Manish Pandey, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Hardik Pandya, Mohammad Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah. Standby: Suresh Raina, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur.
Rohit Reshammiya Hashmi