India call up Kuldeep Yadav for forthcoming Tests against England

Apart from Bhuvneshwar, India's fast-bowling group will also be without Jasprit Bumrah for the first Test at least.

Young wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant was on Wednesday named in the 18-member Indian squad for the first three Tests against England, while pacer Mohammad Shami made an expected comeback to the side.

Seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar aggravated a lower-back condition in the third One-Day International against England at Headingley on Tuesday and was missing from the squad. He also sat out the final T20 against England and the first two ODIs due to the back condition. But Root wants his strongest XI on the field and, if he is fit, Stokes will be named in the squad when it is announced next Thursday.

Bumrah's fitness too will be assessed before the second Test, which leaves the India pace pack unsettled.

Wriddhiman Saha was dropped from the squad after suffering an injury, and he did not feature in the lone Afghanistan Test in June as well.

Bhuvi who played the third ODI has not been included in the squad.

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India's linchpin had suffered an injury to his left thumb in the first Twenty20 global against Ireland.

Pant, in the India A squad in England, has played four T20s for India and his inclusion suggests a change of view by the selectors after his technique was questioned a few months back by chief selector MSK Prasad, a former India keeper.

Young chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav retains his place, though Joe Root tackling him easily in the last two ODIs may have left the selectors with much to ponder.

The selectors resisted the temptation of handing out Test selection based on limited-overs performances two matches after captain Virat Kohli had said Kuldeep and fellow wristspinner Yuzvendra Chahal had made a serious case for Test selection.

Squad: Virat Kohli (capt), Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-capt), Karun Nair, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur.

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