Sun, 27 Sep 2020

Dhawan replaced by Shaw and Samson for New Zealand tour

ESPNCricInfo
22 Jan 2020, 05:42 GMT+10

12:05 PM ET

Prithvi Shaw could be in line for an ODI debut in New Zealand having replaced the injured Shikhar Dhawan for the three-match series set to begin on February 5. Both teams play a five-match T20I series prior to that, for which Sanju Samson has been picked as the BCCI confirmed Dhawan, who was first-choice opener before a grade two injury to his shoulder, will report to the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore for rehabilitation.

Shaw, who made a Test century on debut in 2018, is already in New Zealand with the India A team and has been in excellent form. The 20-year old opener struck a compelling 150 against New Zealand A in a warm-up game on Sunday to follow a double-hundred for Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy. He did suffer a minor injury scare a few weeks ago, having fallen on his shoulder while fielding, but judging by that hundred in Lincoln, which included 22 fours and two sixes, there appears to be little discomfort.

Shaw has been on an upward track since his return from doping violation in November 2019. His first innings back was a half-century which he celebrated by pointing at his back and then making a talking gesture. The BCCI, while imposing a back-dated sanction, said Shaw had accidentally taken a forbidden substance commonly found in cough syrups. Should he make it to the XI during this three-match series against New Zealand, he will make his ODI debut in the same place where he led India to the Under-19 World Cup title in 2017. Outside of his inclusion, India kept faith in the same squad that beat Australia 2-1 at home.

Samson, meanwhile, has been on the fringes of national selection for several years. The wicketkeeper batsman played his first international in July 2015 and that had been his only game for India until earlier this month when he made the squad for the T20I series against Sri Lanka. Both Samson and Shaw may yet be confined to the reserves considering India still have Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul to open the batting and Rishabh Pant to keep wicket.

Mohammed Shami is the only other addition to the T20I squad that beat Sri Lanka 2-0. He has shown great improvement in his limited-overs skills, some of which were display on his last tour of New Zealand when he picked up nine wickets from four ODIs. He joined a fast-bowling line-up which includes Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini and Shardul Thakur. India were spoiled for choice in the spin department as well with Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja and Washington Sundar all part of the squad for the five-match T20I series.

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