Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has been included in India's squad for the T20 World Cup in Oman and the United Arab Emirates later this year.
Ashwin has not played T20I cricket since 2017, but has featured in several editions of the Indian Premier League since.
The squad also includes fast bowlers Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami – and seaming all-rounder Hardik Pandya. Batsman Shikhar Dhawan and leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal were overlooked.
“If the wickets are such that you can only play two fast men, there is no point then to bench the extra fast bowlers. Instead you have utility players who will come in handy at some point in the match and that is why you have spinners and all-rounders,” said chairman of selectors Chetan Sharma.
“When you got to a World Cup you need an off-spinner. The wickets are likely to be low and slow as the IPL's latter half will be played in the UAE and that will help the spinners.
“Washington Sundar is part of the injured list and Ashwin has been an asset for the team and the way he has performed in the IPL that is the reason he has found a place in the team.
“Hardik is absolutely fit and he's going to bowl his quota of overs in every match. We didn't bowl him very often because we were saving him for the World Cup.
“Ishan Kishan can bat as an opener as well as fit in as a middle-order batsman. He gave us a lot of options as a player. He's already opened in the ODI format. He's also a good player of spin in the middle order.”
India's 2021 T20 World Cup Squad
- Virat Kohli (captain)
- Rohit Sharma
- KL Rahul
- Suryakumar Yadav
- Rishabh Pant (wicketkeeper)
- Ishan Kishan (wicketkeeper)
- Hardik Pandya
- Ravindra Jadeja
- Rahul Chahar
- Ravichandran Ashwin
- Axar Patel
- Varun Chakravarthy
- Jasprit Bumrah
- Bhuvneshwar Kumar
- Mohammed Shami
The 2021 T20 World Cup will run from 17 October to 14 November. The West Indies are the reigning champions and the most successful team in the history of the tournament, which used to be called the World Twenty20, with two titles.