India call up Karthik for Champions Trophy after Pandey injury


Seasoned wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik was called as a replacement for the injured Pandey.

While there might be other names being considered favourites on IPL form, Karthik's selection seems to be a result of his strong domestic performance.

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Middle-order batsman Manish Pandey, who picked up an injury during a training session with the Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday, has been ruled out of next month's Champions Trophy, a release from the Board of Control for Cricket in India said on Thursday. His average was 86 plus and scored the runs at a strike rate of over 100.

Karthik, who will soon be celebrating his 32nd birthday, scored 607 runs during Tamil Nadu's victorious Vijay Hazare Trophy campaign, including a century in the final. In 14 matches, Karthik scored 361 runs at an impressive average of 36 and strike rate of nearly 140, for The Gujarat Lions.

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The 15-member squad, led by Virat Kohli, sees the return of Rohit Sharma and Mohammed Shami, while no new faces were introduced as the rest of the team is largely what it was for the last ODI series played by India, against England in January 2017. He has played 23 Tests, 71 ODIs and 9 T20Is for India.

Karthik is making a return to the Indian team after a gap of three years as the wicket-keeper batsman last played for India against Afghanistan in 2014.

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India's group also includes Sri Lanka and South Africa, apart from Pakistan.