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Yuvraj, Zaheer dropped for fourth Test

9 December 2012 09:51

In the wake of their loss to England, India have dropped Yuvraj Singh and Zaheer Khan for the final Test in Nagpur on Thursday.

Harbhajan Singh has also been omitted from the 15-man squad with leg-spinner Piyush Chawla, bowling all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and paceman Parvinder Awana included.

Yuvraj, who returned to Test cricket after more than a year, made 74 in the first innings of the first Test in Ahmedabad but had not been among the runs since then, making 51 runs in four innings in the past two matches.

Zaheer has also struggled in the three Tests claiming just four wickets and has not managed to find as much reverse swing as the England speedsters.

Harbhajan played in the Mumbai Test when India went in with three spinners but was left out in the third match at Kolkata.

Jadeja, mostly considered a limited overs player, has forced the selectors to hand him his first Test call-up on the back of two triple hundreds he scored in the Ranji Trophy in the last month.

Piyush Chawla is the surprise inclusion in the squad but is not likely to make the playing 11 with R Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha likely to retain their places.

With Zaheer's absence, Ashok Dinda is certain to play the Nagpur Test as Awana's inclusion seems to be more a case of giving the youngster some experience.

With the No.6 slot in the batting order open, highly rated Ajinkya Rahane, a top order batsman in domestic cricket, is likely to pip Murali Vijay and make his debut at Nagpur.

The selectors also announced the squad for the two T20 internationals that follows the Test series with the inclusion of pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar the only real surprise in the squad.

Zaheer and Virender Sehwag made themselves unavailable for the T20 series and hence were not considered, the BCCI release said.

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