Rohit Sharma returns back to T20 squad for New Zealand tour

While the Indian vice-captain has been included in the 16-man squad, Kerala youngster Sanju Samson has been dropped by the selectors

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On Sunday, Indian selectors announced the 16-member T20I squad for the New Zealand tour. In this, it has been revealed that the vice-captain Rohit Sharma returned to the team. However, Kerala youngster Sanju Samson was dropped to make way for Sharma. The five-man selection panel also announced the return of pacer Mohammed Shami, who like Rohit, was rested for the T20I series against Sri Lanka which India won 2-0.

Wicket-keeper batsman Sanju Samson only played the third T20 against Sri Lanka in Pune where he managed to score six runs. Meanwhile, there were no major changes in the squad with most of the players picking themselves.

The five-match T20I series against New Zealand is set to begin on January 24 in Auckland. On the other hand, MSK Prasad-led selection committee has kept the ODI and Test squads on hold for the time being. 

There are no surprises in the Indian T20I squad with Rohit as usual coming back in place of Sanju, who is already in New Zealand with the A team. All the other players picked themselves," a senior BCCI official told PTI. 

The reason behind holding the announcement for the Test and ODI squads is believed to be Hardik Pandya's latest fitness debacle. A BCCI release said that Hardik Pandya's rehabilitation process is taking "longer than expected". Accordingly, Vijay Shankar had replaced Pandya in the India A squad for New Zealand shadow tour. 

India's T20I squad for NZ tour: Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma (VC), KL Rahul, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant (WK), Shivam Dube, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur

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