Yuvraj Singh, overcoming cancer battle which kept him out of cricket throughout the year, was today named in India's World T20 squad but selectors have shown lots of sense by including him in test squad for home team against New Zealand as well, giving southpaw some much needed match practice before the big tournament..
UV was having breathing difficulties, nausea and bouts of vomiting blood during 2011 World Cup but he continued and ended up winning the player of the tournament award. Six months later he was diagnosed with a rare for of cancer - mediastinal seminoma - and subsequently underwent chemotherapy in the US. He returned to India in April and began training at the NCA in Bangalore in June.
New Zealand play two tests in India, starting 23rd August, and Indians have fielded a strong line-up that's only missing Rahul Dravid who recently announced his retirement from all international cricket.
MS Dhoni will lead India's squad, with Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir taking the opening slot. Virat Kohli has done more than enough to reserve the no.3 slot, backed up by Sachin Tendulkar who last played for India during Asia cup in March.
VVS Laxman was initially named in the squad but he announced his retirement 3 days before the first test match. Subramaniam Badrinath has been named his replacement.
Yuvraj Singh seems the automatic choice for the no.6 position but Suresh Raina, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane are three youngsters who'll be waiting in the wings through the test series. Raina has earned his place back after good performances in Sri Lanka while Pujara, having fixed his injury, did extremely well in tough conditions in West Indies for India A tour. These two will hope for a middle order position while Rahane will be the reserve opener. There's lot of fight for batting slots in Indian team, with Rohit Sharma dropped, and these three will have to grab all the chances they get, whenever they get.
Zaheer Khan will lead India's fast bowling attack, with raw pace of Umesh Yadav and bouncing deliveries of Ishant Sharma. Sharma wasn't supposed to be selected due to an injury, but he seems to have passed the fitness test conducted by the selectors.
Spin department will be handled by offspinner R Ashwin and left arm spinner Pragyan Ojha. Surprizingly, Rahul Sharma has been neglected, probably for his drug report during IPL earlier this year, making way for Piyush Chawla.
The same squad named for T20 world cup will participate in two T20s against New Zealand in September after the test series.