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Gautam Gambhir replaces Lokesh Rahul for New Zealand Tests

Gautam Gambhir replaces Lokesh Rahul for New Zealand Tests
Gautam Gambhir last played for India in Tests in August 2014
©REUTERS / Action Images

Opening batsman Gautam Gambhir has been named as the replacement for the injured Lokesh Rahul in the Indian squad for the ongoing Test series against New Zealand.

Gambhir makes a comeback into the national side after more than two years and last played a Test match in August 2014 against England at The Oval.

Between 2004 and 2014, Gambhir played 56 Test matches and has 4046 runs at an average of 42.48 including nine hundreds and 21 fifties.

In the 2016 Duleep Trophy – the zonal first-class tournament in India – Gambhir scored 356 runs from three games including four fifties and was the fourth highest run scorer.

For the second Test in Kolkata, the selectors have also called up uncapped off-spinner Jayant Yadav as a replacement for Ishant Sharma, who is yet to fully recover from Chikungunya.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India has confirmed in a media release that Sharma’s recovery will continue to be monitored.

Yadav is also a handy lower-order batsman with two hundreds and five fifties against his name in first-class cricket, with a top score of 211 runs.

India squad:

Virat Kohli (capt), Ajinkya Rahane, Gautam Gambhir, Cheteshwar Pujara, Murali Vijay, Rohit Sharma, Ravichandran Ashwin, Wriddhiman Saha (wkt), Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Shami, Jayant Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shikhar Dhawan, Amit Mishra, Umesh Yadav.

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