Former In the captain MS Dhoni has been named as the mentor of the team that will embark on the journey to win a second T20 World Cup title. The BCCI, on Wednesday announced a group of 15 men, plus the reserves, for the tournament which will be played in the UAE and Oman from 17 October.
MS Dhoni led a young Men In Blue outfit to fame in the first T20 World Cup in 2007 in South Africa. Then India defeated arch-rivals Pakistan in the final; their opening match this year is also against Pakistan, on October 24 in Dubai.
MS Dhoni retired from international cricket last year, after playing his last international match during the 2019 World Cup in England – the semi-final against New Zealand. However, he played in the IPL and was the captain of the Chennai Super Kings.
MS Dhoni has run in as India’s mentor for the 2020 T20 World Cup:
The 40-year-old will accompany the team to the mega-event. India have not managed to lift the trophy again since 2007. In the last tournament, at home in 2016, India reached the semi-finals before losing to eventual champions West Indies.
On the decision to mentor MS Dhoni, BCCI secretary Jay Shah said: ‘I spoke to Dhoni in Dubai. He was good with the decision and agreed to only be a mentor for Team India for the T20 World Cup. I also spoke to Captain, Vice Captain and Ravi Shastri, all on the same page. ”
– BCCI (@BCCI) 8 September 2021
R Ashwin is back; Yuzvendra Chahal omitted
Ravichandran Ashwin has been recalled to the T20 line-up and joined the World Cup squad straight away, while leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal has been ruled out. Rahul Chahar, Ravindra Jadeja, Varun Chakravarthy and Axar Patel are the other spinners in the team. Ashwin last played a T20I in July 2017.
Shikhar Dhawan was also left out while Ishant Kishan, who hit fifty on his T20I and one-day debut, gets a ticket to the World Cup. Three players – Shreyas Iyer, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar – are named standby.
Team: Virat Kohli (c), Rohit Sharma (vc), KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Varun Chakravarthy , Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohd Shami.
Standby players – Shreyas Iyer, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar.