India (above) are scheduled to play a four Tests against West Indies © AFP
India (above) are scheduled to play a four Tests against West Indies © AFP

The Indian selectors on Monday announced the 15-member squad of India for the upcoming tour of West Indies. India are scheduled to play a four Tests against West Indies, as it will also be the first bilateral affair between the two nations since late 2014. Opening batsman Ajinkya Rahane was named the vice-captain for the side, while the side would be led by regular skipper Virat Kohli. Shardul Thakur was the only new face in the side. Back then, West Indies had left the India tour 2014 midway after the fourth ODI, due to a  payment and contract dispute with the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB). Since then, bilateral relations between both the nations had been sore, before things normalised earlier in 2016. Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) suffered financial losses owing to the pull out midway by the West Indies. The exact dates and venues of the upcoming tour in July-August 2016 is yet to be announced by the WICB. READ: Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane rested, MS Dhoni to lead; India announce squad for Zimbabwe tour

Earlier, according to the press release, WICB President Dave Cameron said, “We are extremely delighted that concerns which arose due to the incomplete tour have been addressed and would like to thank BCCI for reviving our ties. West Indies cricket appreciates the support of BCCI and the cricket loving fans of the islands keenly look forward to witness some exciting contests between the two teams.”

BCCI Secretary Anurag Thakur said, “ BCCI is happy to resume their bilateral ties with WICB. We recognise that West Indies has a huge role to play in the development of cricket and we are happy to support their endeavours. This tour will further strengthen the bond between the Indian and the West Indian fans, who have over the years patronized this glorious game of cricket.” Given the immense popularity of West Indian cricketers in India, this series is likely to gain immense viewership.

Squad for West Indies tour: Virat Kohli (c), Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Rohit Sharma, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Shardul Thakur, Stuart Binny, Amit Mishra.