India's star batsman Sachin Tendulkar has opted out of the first three ties of the seven-match One-Day International series against England starting in Rajkot Nov 14.
Announcing the 15-member squad for the series, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary N. Srinivasan said considering the hectic schedule during the year and also the tours ahead, the national selectors acceded to Tendulkar's request that he be rested for the first three games.
The selectors, who finalised the squad for the first three matches here Wednesday night, also decided to rotate the bowlers so that they get adequate rest. Tendulkar has not played ODIs since the tri-series in Australia in March. An elbow injury prevented him from playing in the one-day series in Sri Lanka August-September and before that he pulled out of the Bangladesh series and the Asia Cup in Pakistan owing to a groin injury.
All-rounder Irfan Pathan, medium-pacer Praveen Kumar and middle-order batsman Badrinath, who replaced Tendulkar, and wicketkeeper-batsman Parthiv Patel have been omitted.
Virender Sehwag, who missed the Sri Lanka tour with an ankle injury, and Irfan's brother Yusuf return to the squad while Tamil Nadu opener Murali Vijay is the only newcomer to the side to be captained by Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
England will arrive in Mumbai Thursday and will play practice matches against a Mumbai team Nov 9 and 11. England will also play a two-Test series beginning in Ahmedabad Dec 11.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Rudra Pratap Singh, Virat Kohli, Murali Vijay.
Kevin Pietersen (captain), James Anderson, Ian Bell, Ravi Bopara, Stuart Broad, Paul Collingwood, Alastair Cook, Andrew Flintoff, Steve Harmison, Samit Patel, Matt Prior, Owais Shah, Ryan Sidebottom, Graeme Swann, Luke Wright.
England team's itinerary:
Nov 6: Arrive in Mumbai; Nov 9: One-day warm-up match, Mumbai; Nov 11: Second warm-up match, Mumbai; Nov 14: 1st one-dayer, Rajkot; Nov 17: 2nd one-dayer, Indore; Nov 20: 3rd one-dayer, Kanpur; Nov 23: 4th one-dayer, Jamshedpur; Nov 26: 5th one-dayer, Cuttack; Nov 29: 6th one-dayer, Guwahati; Dec 02: 7th one-dayer, Delhi.
Dec 5-7: 3-day warm-up match, Vadodara; Dec 11-15: 1st Test, Ahmedabad; Dec 19-23, 2nd Test, Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai.