Vijay Shankhar and Ravindra Jadeja were picked for India’s World Cup cricket team on Monday while Ambati Rayudu was left out.
The squad was named by chief selector MSK Prasad after meeting with skipper Virat Kohli.
Rishabh Pant also missed out while the experienced Dinesh Karthik was chosen for the tournament in England.
“After the Champions Trophy (in 2017) … we did give a few more chances to Rayudu but what Vijay Shankar offers is three dimensions,” Prasad said.
The chief selector said Shankar’s “fantastic fielding” also went in his favor and if the conditions were overcast in England he might also bowl.
The squad also included KL Rahul, who could either open or fit in the middle order along with Kedhar Jadhav and Karthik. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami are the three frontline fast bowlers with all-rounder Hardik Pandya.
The strong Indian batting lineup includes 2015 World Cup veterans in Kohli, vice-captain Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and MS Dhoni.
Prasad said Karthik could come in India’s playing XI if Dhoni is injured, and Karthik’s experience of performing under pressure won him the spot ahead of Pant.
“Pant is full of talent. There’s a lot of time for him,” Prasad said. “Under pressure, we have seen Dinesh Karthik finishing matches (and) that scored for him.”
Prasad said an additional four fast bowlers will travel with the team to England in case there’s an injury. However, Prasad did not name which four pacers will accompany the team.
The ICC has set April 23 as deadline for the 10 countries participating in the tournament to finalize their squads. But Prasad said no changes will be made to the 15-member squad announced Monday unless there’s injury.
India will open its World Cup campaign when it takes on South Africa in Southampton on June 5.
Squad: Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Vijay Shankar, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami.