Stung by two successive defeats,the national selectors finally took a tough call as Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh has been axed from the squad.
They have been dropped for the fourth and final Test against England, starting from December 13 in Nagpur.
Delhi fast bowler Parwinder Awana, Suarashtra allrounder Ravindra Jadeja and leg spinner Piyush Chawla has been named in the team. Sachin Tendulkar retained his Test spot, and MS Dhoni his captaincy.
Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who did not play the last match, also found himself in casualty list as the selectors opted for a leg-spinner in Piyush Chawla .
Barring Yuvraj and Zaheer's omissions, there were no major changes to the squad announced by BCCI Secretary Sanjay Jagdale after a meeting of the Sandeep Patil-led selection panel.
The selectors also announced the team for the two Twenty20 matches to be held in Pune (December 20) and Mumbai (December 22) in which Uttar Pradesh all-rounder Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Awana were the two new faces.
Squad for Nagpur Test: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (c), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli,Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin Piyush Chawla,Ishant Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Ashok Dinda, M Vijay, Parvinder Awana.
Squad for Twenty20 series: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (c),Gautam Gambhir, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma,Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Manoj Tiwary, Ravichandran Ashwin,Ravindra Jadeja, Piyush Chawla, Ashok Dinda, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Laxmipathy Balaji, Parvinder Awana.
Despite two successive humiliating defeats on home soil, underfire Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni refused to step down from captaincy, saying it was not the time to run away but take responsibility and turn the team’s fortunes around.
Of course there are others who will decide. There is BCCI and the administrative people who also want to look into that”, Dhoni said at the post-match press conference.
The team for the two-match T20 series that will follow next have also been declared. Yuvraj Singh, however, retained his place in the shortest format of the game. As expected, Suresh Raina comes in too.
Former players lambasted India's meek surrender in two consecutive Tests against England on home turf, who felt it was high time theselectors made players accountable for their shambolicperformance.
India lost by seven wickets in the third Test in Kolkata to concede an unassailable 2-1 series lead to England, who had earlier mauled the hosts by 10 wickets in the second match in Mumbai.
"England were well-prepared while India were over confident. The Indian preparation for this important series was diabolical," said former captain and ex-chief selector Dilip Vengsarkar.
"When we went to England we played one warm-up game before plunging into the Test series. The same happened when we went to Australia. By contrast England's preparations were very good. I hope the selectors show vision and courage of conviction. At least a couple of changes are expected straightaway," he said.
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