India call on their depth as two key stars aren’t included in their Test squad

India have named an 18-man squad to play England and there is no places within it for in-form Rohit Sharma or star bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

Sharma impressed in the limited overs leg of India’s tour, scoring two centuries and a fifty at the top of the order.

Karun Nair has instead been chosen by BCCI selectors, as Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan and Lokesh Rahul battle it out for the opening spots with Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane to follow.

Whereas Sharma has been overlooked, right-arm seamer Kumar has aggravated a lower back problem which kept his sidelined until the third ODI against England on Tuesday.

The 28-year-old will continue to be assessed by the team’s medical staff with the squad named available for the first three matches of the five-Test series.

A statement provided an update on Kumar, confirming: “His condition is being assessed by the BCCI medical team and a call on his inclusion in the Test squad will be made soon.

“Jasprit Bumrah who has been included in the squad, will be available for selection from the second Test onwards based on his fitness.”

The blow of losing Kumar has been lightened by the inclusion of wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav, who bedazzled England’s batsmen during the T20 and ODI series with his left-arm bowling.

The addition of Yadav to India’s world-class spin duo Ravindra Jadeja and Ravi Ashwin heightens the threat England’s batsmen will face, while Ishant Sharma’s form for Sussex earns him a spot in Ravi Shastri’s side.

The five Tests will be played at Edgbaston, Lord’s, Trent Bridge, Ageas Bowl and The Oval.

India’s squad for first three Tests against England:

Virat Kohli (Capt), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, M Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Karun Nair, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur.

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