India skipper Virat Kohli has been rested for the ODI series against Sri Lanka. Rohit Sharma will lead the side in his absence. Shikhar Dhawan, Mohammed Shami who missed the 2nd Test at Nagpur, will return to the side for the final match at New Delhi. The selectors have also added Kuldeep Yadav to the squad to bolster Virat Kohli's spin options.
The MSK Prasad-led selection panel announced India's squads shortly after the team's innings and 239-run win over the Sri Lankans in the second Test at Nagpur.
India earlier announced squads for the first two Tests, with the selectors including most of the seniors in it despite the cramped schedule that the Indian team have had to deal with in their home season. While Mohammed Shami was rested for the second Test due to fitness niggles that he was visibly suffering from at Kolkata, opener Shikhar Dhawan and pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar were released ahead of the second Test, with the latter tying the knot at his hometown Meerut earlier this week. Tamil Nadu pacer Vijay Shankar earned his maiden India call-up ahead of the second Test.
India currently lead the series 1-0, thanks to an innings-and-239-run demolition of the visitors in the second Test at Nagpur. While the Sri Lankans put up a tough fight in the first Test in Kolkata, in which they shot India out for 172 and grabbing a 122-run first innings lead in the drawn Test, they were massively outplayed in the second game.
The Nagpur match, saw comeback men Murali Vijay, Rohit Sharma and Ishant Sharma make the most of the opportunity handed to them. While Ishant produced beautiful spells of bowling in both innings, recording figures of 3/37 in the first innings, both Vijay and Rohit were among the four centurions in Indian innings as the hosts piled on a massive 610/6. The second Sri Lankan innings then saw the visitors fold up for a lowly 165, with Ashwin collecting the final wicket to become the fastest bowler to 300 Test wickets, beating Dennis Lillee to the milestone.
India begin their overseas assignments with the marathon tour of South Africa, which starts on 5 January and comprises three Tests, as many T20Is and six ODIs, and will go on till 24 February. This will be India's first major overseas tour since their four-month stay in Australia during the 2014-15 season that also included the ICC World Cup.
The team for the South African tour is expected to be announced later today.
Team for 3rd Test against Sri Lanka: Virat Kohli (C), Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Rohit Sharma, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Vijay Shankar
Team for ODI series against Sri Lanka: Rohit Sharma (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (wk), Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul
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India had defeated Sri Lanka in first T20I by 38 runs and was looking to seal the series in the second match.
Sri Lanka's South African coach was seen sharing heated words with Shanaka and gesturing at the captain on the field after the game they lost by three wickets.
Dhawan also praised the spinners for bringing India back into the match after Sri Lanka made a strong start.