New Delhi, July 18 (IANS) Flamboyant left-hander Yuvraj Singh, who has recovered from cancer, made a surprise comeback Wednesday to India's 30-member preliminary squad for the Twenty20 World Cup beginning in Sri Lanka September 18.
The Man of the Series of the ODI World Cup in India was diagnosed with a rare germ cell cancer and underwent chemotherapy treatment at the Cancer Research Institute in Boston.
Since then Yuvraj has made giant strides towards regaining full fitness by training at Bangalore's National Cricket Academy.
I think a guy who has won the World Cup for us deserves to come back, chief selector Krishnamachari Srikkanth had stated.
Out of favour off-spinner Harbhajan Singh too makes a comeback to the side. Another surprise pick was medium-pacer Lakshmipathy Balaji, who last played an international match in 2009 against Sri Lanka.
Balaji, who has not played any T20 for the national squad, was rewarded for his consistent performance for the Kolkata Knight Riders in fifth edition of the Indian Premier League.
Mandeep Singh, former captain of the India under-19 team too received a call-up for his good showing for Kings XI Punjab in the IPL.
Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane, Naman Ojha and Ambati Rayudu too have been included owing to their good performance this season in the IPL. Regulars like Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli are all in the squad.
Squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, R. Ashwin, Pragyan Ojha, Umesh Yadav, Ashok Dinda, Ajinkya Rahane, Manoj Tiwary, Rahul Sharma, Vinay Kumar, Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh, Robin Uthappa, Irfan Pathan, Yusuf Pathan, Mandeep Singh, Piyush Chawla, Ravindra Jadeja, Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Harbhajan Singh, Munaf Patel, Naman Ojha, Dinesh Karthik, Praveen Kumar, Lakshmipathy Balaji