Ravi Ashwin is likely to make a comeback in the ODI squad after a gap of five years. India will play a three-match ODI series against South Africa in January. The Chetan Sharma-led selection panel is likely to meet in the next 24 hours to announce the squad for the ODI series. Ashwin in all likelihood will be included in the team.
The off-spinner has been in terrific form for India in the T20Is. His recent good showing in the 20-20 World Cup and the three-match T20I series against New Zealand has solidified his reputation in the white-ball formats. All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has not recovered fully from the forearm injury and is likely to be rested for the series. This could mean the selectors might name Ashwin in the ODI squad along with Axar Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal. Ashwin last played an ODI match in 2017.
Apart from Ashwin, even Venkatesh Iyer and Ruturaj Gaikwad are in line to be picked for the ODI squad. The duo has been in good form in the Vijay Hazare Trophy. Iyer got to make his T20I debut against New Zealand and looked impressive. He is seen as a likely replacement for Hardik Pandya, who is still recovering to full fitness.
“Cricbuzz understands Venkatesh Iyer, who has been making waves since his breakout performance in the UAE leg of the IPL in September-October, will get the selectors nod as a probable backup for Hardik Pandya, who has been troubled by injuries of late,” said a report in Cricbuzz
On the other hand, Gaikwad plundered four centuries in Vijay Hazare Trophy and has high probabilities of being named as one of the openers for the ODI series. “With four centuries in five games of the Vijay Hazare tournament, Maharashtra and Chennai Super Kings opener Ruturaj Gaikwad will inevitably select himself. But the selectors will have to wrack their brains over another opener, Shikhar Dhawan. The last time India played an ODI series - in Sri Lanka in July - the southpaw was the skipper but has since been facing stiff competition from the likes of Devdutt Paddikal and Prithvi Shaw who have been doing well,” the report added.