India's newly appointed selection panel met for the first time on Sunday to pick squad for the upcoming home ODI series against South Africa.
The Sunil Joshi-led panel revealed their take on MS Dhoni, who hasn't featured in the blues since World Cup 2019.
The selectors made it clear that Dhoni should perform well in the IPL in order to be in contention again.
"He will be back in the reckoning only if he has a good IPL. And why only him, there are so many senior and young players. If they do well, they will be considered too. So, you could see some surprise inclusions," he said.
A look at the Indian squad to face South Africa: Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw, Virat Kohli (captain), KL Rahul, Manish Pandey, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Shubman Gill.
However, the selectors didn't stress much upon Dhoni's future.
"It was a pretty straightforward selection meeting and since Dhoni was obviously not in the reckoning this time, there was no formal talk about his future," a BCCI source told PTI.
Looking at the upcoming T20 World Cup edition, the games leading up to the it will also be crucial for selection.
However, the official schedule has not been out yet.
With KL Rahul being primed as a wicket-Keeper in the limited overs format, Rishabh Pant will be raring to prove himself.
Besides, Dhoni's comeback can't be ruled out as well, owing to his experience.
Dhoni led his franchise Chennai Super Kings to a third IPL title in 2018, while the yellow army fell short by a thin margin in the following season.
In 2018, he scored 455 runs from 15 innings at an average of 75.83, while his average climbed to 83.20 in 2019.
He would look for a positive start against Mumbai Indians in the tournament opener.
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