India bring veteran Ravichandran Ashwin in World Cup 2023 squad replacing injured Axar Patel
Ashwin has been part of two India World Cup squads in the past — in the 2011 edition when India won the title and in 2015.
India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin is in action during an one-day international match against Australia in Mohali, Punjab, on Friday, September 22, 2023. (ANI Photo)
INDIA made a major last-minute change to their 15-member squad for the upcoming World Cup at home on Thursday (28) when veteran off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was picked as the replacement for injured left-arm spinner-all-rounder Axar Parel.
The latter, who sustained a left quadriceps strain during India’s successful Asia Cup campaign recently in Sri Lanka, could not recover in time for the mega event. Ashwin, 37, who was picked for the Indian team for the just concluded three-match one-day international (ODI) series against Australia at home, impressed by picking four wickets in two matches that he played.
Patel was also named conditionally in the squad for the final ODI against the Australians in Rajkot on Wednesday (27) subject to his fitness but missed the match that India lost by 66 runs after winning the series.
Ashwin, who has played 155 ODIs since 2010 and last played for the country in the format in January 2022 before the Australia series, will join the in-form Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja in the squad for the quadrennial tournament that kicks off on October 5.
India play their first match against Australia in Chennai on October 8.
Ashwin has played the 2011 and 2015 World Cups and apart from being the member of a crown-lifting squad, delivered well with 13 scalps in eight matches in the 2015 edition in Australia and New Zealand where India made the semi-finals.
Ashwin was also a part of the Indian squads that competed in the T20 World Cups in the UAE in 2021 and Australia in 2022.
Captain Rohit Sharma said after the Australia series that India are clear in their plans over the 15-man squad for the big tournament and no change will hamper their approach as they chase their third world title in the 50-over format.
India will play two warm-up games against England and the Netherlands before taking the field against Australia.
India World Cup 2023 squad: Rohit Sharma (captain), Hardik Pandya (vice captain), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Suryakumar Yadav.