Pujara, Jadeja, Ashwin, Vijay likely to play Ranji opener
New Delhi: The start of the new domestic season appears to be a star-studded affair with India regulars Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay giving their nods to play for their respective state sides in the first round of the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy matches.
India’s Test batting mainstay Pujara was named the skipper of the 15-member Saurashtra side, that includes Jadeja, for their opening four-day encounter against Haryana at Lahli from October 6.
Meanwhile, Ashwin and Vijay are also likely to feature in Tamil Nadu’s opening clash against Andhra Pradesh at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium after the duo confirmed their availability to their state association, according to an espncricinfo report.
While Ashwin has just finished his assignment, by securing the Division Two title for English county side Worcestershire, Pujara is expected to return to India after completing his county commitments with Nottinghamshire.
The Chennai tweaker aggregated 214 runs at an average of 42.8, including an 82 in the 137-run win over Durham besides finishing with 20 wickets, with one of his two five-fors coming against Durham.
Pujara, on the other hand with aggregated 333 runs from 12 innings at an average of 27.75 so far for Worcestershire.
Meanwhile, both Ashwin and left-arm spinner Jadeja’s availability for their Ranji sides will depend on their selection in the India side for the three-match T20I series against Australia beginning October 7.
The spin duo were rotated out of India’s squad for the One-day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka and Australia.
Vijay, meanwhile, came back to action in the just-concluded Duleep Trophy after recuperating from his surgery for a wrist injury suffered during the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in March.
The right-handed opener played for the India Green side in the pink-ball tournament, where he picked up five wickets but managed to score only 17 runs.