Yadav has to undergo a fitness assessment before linking up with his team-mates
Umesh Yadav has been drafted into India’s Test squad for the Ahmedabad leg of the England series, replacing Shardul Thakur, who has been released to play for Mumbai in the domestic 50-over Vijay Hazare Trophy. Yadav, who will undergo a fitness assessment at the NCA before linking up with the Virat Kohli-led squad, is returning to competitive cricket after recovering from the calf injury he picked up during the Boxing Day Test against Australia.
If cleared, Yadav will join the fast-bowling group comprising Ishant Sharma, who is one short of 100 Test appearances, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj.
Two members in India’s squad – Bumrah and Axar Patel – could potentially feature in front of their home supporters at the revamped Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera. A third Gujarat cricketer, Priyank Panchal, who was part of the reserves, has been released to play in the domestic 50-over competition alongside fellow opener Abhimanyu Easwaran, left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem and Thakur. Hardik Pandya, who hasn’t played Tests since September 2018, is slowly progressing to bowl full tilt after recovering from a shoulder surgery that has forced him play much of his cricket in recent times as a specialist batsman.
Squad for last two Tests: Virat Kohli (capt), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-capt), KL Rahul, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), R Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav (subject to fitness).
More to follow…