Veteran trio handed India A lifelines

India

India selectors have decided to give veterans Gautam Gambhir, Zaheer Khan and Virender Sehwag new leases on life and have named them in the India A squads to face West Indies A over the next month.

India selectors have decided to give veterans Gautam Gambhir, Zaheer Khan and Virender Sehwag new leases on life and have named them in the India A squads to face West Indies A over the next month.

Openers Sehwag and Gambhir have been ousted from the national side in favour of Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay and Cheteshwar Pujara, but have not been named in the side to face the Windies' second string in the second and third four-day games.

Zaheer has also been out of action in recent months, through both injury and poor form, with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav taking up the pace duties. Also getting a recall is Mohammad Kaif, who has not featured for India in a Test since 2006.

The players will hope to impress ahead of the India tour to South Africa at the end of the year, while some other India A names, like Murali Vijay and Dhawan play in the Champions League T20 at the same time as this series.

Former India captain Rahul Dravid agreed with the selections, telling the Times of India: "It is a good chance for them to get back into the national team. They have the advantage from others because they have played at the international stage earlier.

"It's like I have done well at that level and so I can get back there. All of them Sehwag, Zaheer, Gambhir and Yuvraj are trying hard at every opportunity they are getting.

"Gambhir is playing county cricket and I hope Sehwag, Zaheer and Yuvraj get some pre-season games and they do well and push the selectors (to pick them in the national team)."

Schedule:

One-dayers: September 15, 17 and 19

T20: September 21

4-day matches: September 25-28, October 2-5 and October 9-12

Squads:

India A for 3 ODs/1 T20 v WI A: Yuvraj Singh(C), Unmukt Chand, Robin Uthappa, Baba Aparajith, Kedar Jadhav, Naman Ojha (W), Yusuf Pathan, Irfan Pathan, Jaydev Unadkat, Praveen Kumar, Sumit Narwal, Shahbaz Nadeem, Mandeep Singh, Rahul Sharma.

India A for 1st 4-day match: Cheteshwar Pujara (C), Jiwanjot Singh, KL Rahul, Manprit Juneja, Rajat Paliwal, Harshad Khadiwale, Parvez Rasool, Bhargav Bhatt, Ishwar Pandey, Shami Ahmed, Ashok Dinda, Rohit Motwani (W), Dhawal Kulkarni, Paras Dogra.

India A for 2nd/3rd 4-day games vs WI A: Cheteshwar Pujara(C), Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Sheldon Jackson, Abhishek Nayar, Paras Dogra, Uday Kaul (W), Parvez Rasool, Bhargav Bhatt, Dhawal Kulkarni, Zaheer Khan, Ishwar Pandey, Shami Ahmed, Mohammed Kaif.

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