Delhi: After a discussion with the team management, BCCI’s National Selection Committee has added Chennai Super Kings all-rounder Shardul Thakur to the Indian cricket team’s main squad for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2021, starting October 17 in The UAE and Oman. Shardul has replaced Delhi Capitals all-rounder Axar Patel who will now be on the list of standby players. Axar was earlier part of the 15-member Team India squad for the quadrennial event.

“The All-India Senior Selection Committee after a discussion with the team management has added Shardul Thakur to the main squad. All-rounder Axar Patel, who was part of the 15-member squad will now be on the list of standby players,” the BCCI said in a statement.

India will open their campaign against arch-rivals Pakistan on October 24 at the Dubai International Stadium. The 2007 champions will also face Afghanistan and New Zealand along with 2 qualifiers in Group 2.

The 29-year-old Shardul has been rewarded for his consistency in the ongoing IPL 2021 where he represents three-time champions CSK. Shardul has picked up 18 wickets in 15 matches at an impressive strike rate of 18.61. He has played a crucial role in taking MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings to their record ninth IPL final.

India’s squad for ICC T20 World Cup

Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma (vice-captain), KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Varun Chakravarthy, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammad Shami

Stand-by players: Shreyas Iyer, Deepak Chahar, Axar Patel

The following cricketers will join the team bubble in Dubai and assist Team India in their preparations:

Avesh Khan, Umran Malik, Harshal Patel, Lukman Meriwala, Venkatesh Iyer, Karn Sharma, Shahbaz Ahmed and K. Gowtham.