Gautam Gambhir returns to India Test squad in place of injured KL Rahul

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Kolkata, Sep 27: Left-handed opening batsman Gautam Gambhir was today (September 27) recalled into the Indian Test squad in place of the injured KL Rahul for the remaining two Tests against New Zealand. (Ind-NZ series schedule)

I don't play for selection: Gambhir

Opener Rahul sustained a hamstring injury while running between the wickets during the first Test against the Kiwis in Kanpur. India won the match by 197 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. (Gambhir-Kohli fight at IPL)

Gautam Gambhir is back in Indian Test squad after 2 years

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on Tuesday night (September 27), announced that there were 2 changes for the 2nd Test. (Not defeated, says Gambhir)

"BCCI medical team has confirmed that team India opener, KL Rahul has an injury in his right hamstring and he is ruled out for the remainder of the Paytm Test series against New Zealand. The All-India Senior Selection Committee has named Gautam Gambhir as Rahul's replacement for the next two Test matches," a BCCI release said.

The second Test, which starts at Kolkata's Eden Gardens on Friday (September 30), sees the return of Gambhir, who last played for India in the longer format in August 2014.

The 34-year-old Gambhir has so far played 56 Tests, scoring over 4,000 runs. He recently impressed in the Duleep Trophy, having compiled four back-to-back half centuries including 2 ninety plus scores.

The selectors also called up uncapped offspinner Jayant Yadav as a cover for fast bowler Ishant Sharma, who is recovering from chikungunya. Ishant missed the first Test, India's 500th in history. The Delhi bowler is set to sit out the Kolkata game too.

"Medium pacer Ishant Sharma is recovering and won't be available for the second Test of the series to played in Kolkata. BCCI medical Team will continue to monitor his progress. Off spinner Jayant Yadav will replace Ishant for the second Test," BCCI's honorary secretary Ajay Shirke was quoted as saying.

India already have a specialist opener in the squad with Shikhar Dhawan. Whether Gambhir will get a chance in the Playing XI or Dhawan replaces Rahul is yet to be confirmed.

Earlier in the day, Gambhir passed a fitness test at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru. Yuvraj Singh, Barinder Sran and Jasprit Bumrah too underwent fitness tests.

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