Sehwag dropped for ODIs, Pujara gets call




The Indian team for the first three One Day Internationals against England was announced by Sandip Patil led selection committee in Delhi on Sunday and the most noted absentee from the 15 men squad was Virender Sehwag. In the only change to the squad that took part in the ODI series against Pakistan and lost 1-2, Sehwag was left out in favour of Cheteshwar Pujara, who got his maiden limited overs call after a fantastic performance in domestic cricket.

Gautam Gambhir has been retained; while Mahendra Singh Dhoni continues as captain despite some suggestions in the Indian media he should be replaced.

Surprise inclusion was that of Rohit Sharma despite his poor returns in ODIs of late. Rohit has averaged a shocking 12.92 in 2012 calendar year. His last six scores in ODI were 5, 0, 0, 4, 4 and 4.

India have come under criticism for recent poor form and for losing 1-2 to England in 4 match Test series and 1-2 to rivals Pakistan in their ODI series, both at home. With the rising clamor for changes in the team from fans and critics Indian selectors offered Sehwag as the sacrifice.

The 34 year old was left out of Sunday’s third and final clash against Pakistan and has now been left out by the Indian selectors for the matches against England in Rajkot, Kochi and Ranchi.

Cheteshwar Pujara gets call for ODIs

Cheteshwar Pujara gets call for ODIs

Sehwag has been woefully out of form in recent times and averaged 21.70 with the bat in One Day International cricket in 2012, compared to a career ODI batting average of 35.05 from 251 games. His 2012 average was his lowest for ODIs in a calendar year since 2000.

Pujara, on the other hand, has been in great form in domestic cricket and created quite a splash in the nine Test matches he has played so far, hitting an average of 58.53.

A BCCI source told ESPNcricinfo that this could well be the end of Sehwag’s limited-overs career. Sehwag has been dropped, said the source, because “he doesn’t figure in the plans for the 2015 World Cup”. Pujara has been brought in “to anchor the innings, especially in the wake of new rules”, which now allow a maximum of two bouncers per over and require a minimum of five fielders inside the circle at all times, which encourages more attacking bowling.

The first three ODIs between India and England will be played in Rajkot, Kochi and Ranchi, on January 11, 15 and 19 respectively.

Squads:

India squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Cheteshwar Pujara, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravinchandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Ashok Dinda, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed, Amit Mishra.

England squad: Alastair Cook (capt), Jonny Bairstow, Ian Bell, Tim Bresnan, Danny Briggs, Jos Buttler (wk), Jade Dernbach, Steven Finn, Craig Kieswetter (wk), Stuart Meaker, Eoin Morgan, Samit Patel, Kevin Pietersen, James Tredwell, Chris Woakes.

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