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Ajinkya Rahane to captain for inaugural Test against Afghanistan

Ajinkya Rahane to captain for inaugural Test against Afghanistan

While the "Prince of Kolkata" felt that including Shreyas Iyer in the ODI squad for England series was a "good decision", he was surprised by Karun Nair's selection for the Test against the Afghans.

India and Afghanistan will play the only Test match of the series in Bengaluru in June.

However, Kohli has been named as captain for the two-match T20 series against Ireland.

He has been signed by Surrey club and will also be missing two T20Is against Ireland. That match is scheduled to be played from 25 to 28 June. "So, we prefer to take our chances during the day like we have played every other Test match throughout our careers", he said. It is always good that he goes there and performs well and he is very keen. "It is only because of the English challenge which we have to rise through to the satisfaction of the entire cricket fraternity in this country and Virat wants to sustain for the right reasons", Choudhary said.

BCCI have also given a new lifeline to 32-year-old Ambati Rayudu, who last played an ODI in June 2016 again on the back of a brilliant IPL season.

Cricketers have missed Test matches in the past, either for the wedding of a close family member, through the birth of a child or the death of a parent, and even the most cussed cynic would not grudge them that.

His little failure - where he managed just 17 runs in five innings against Sri Lanka in late 2017 - then saw Team India think-tank losing its patience and dropping him from first two Tests of the recent South Africa series.

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However, it is highly unlikely that Nair will get a look-in in the playing XI against Afghanistan. Pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah have been rested as they are expected to shoulder the workload during the limited overs leg in United Kingdom before the big-ticket Test series in August.

Kohli would be busy playing county cricket for Surrey when the match takes place here to prepare for the tour of England starting in July.

Ajinkya Rahane named captain for Test against Afghanistan.

Another Mumbaikar, Shardul Thakur, finds a place in the 15-man Test squad, while there is a comeback for Kuldeep Yadav, the left-arm chinaman bowler. Shardul Thakur, who is yet to make his Test debut, will be the fourth pacer.

In the limited overs version, Kaul, who has been a stupendous performer at the domestic level, got the nod. Rohit Sharma is not in the red-ball side, while Ajinkya Rahane isn't part of the white-ball teams.

All three regular openers - M Vijay, KL Rahul and Dhawan - featured in the squad, as well as spinners R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Kuldeep Yadav.


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