India squad for Twenty20s v England 2012
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain, wicketkeeper)
Dhoni’s first contribution as India’s Twenty20 skipper was leading them to victory at the inaugural World Twenty20 in 2007, a trophy they have not won since. The wicketkeeper-batsman has a cool head and a devastating array of strokes, including the ‘helicopter shot’ that he flicks over midwicket.
Like his captain, the opening batsman is a regular in all forms for India. While Gambhir lacks Dhoni’s powerful hitting, he has a deft touch that allows him to score smoothly in the shortest format.
The top-order batsman hit 61 on India debut in a Twenty20 international with England at Old Trafford in 2011. Due to his country’s array of fine batsmen, Rahane had since played just twice more in the format going into this series.
The most talented of India’s new generation of batsmen, Kohli was his country’s top-scorer in the recent World T20. He is a natural timer of the ball and can score rapidly all round the wicket.
Rohit is a limited-overs international specialist thanks to his reliable presence in India’s middle order. He made his short-form debut in the 2007 World T20 and has been a frequent team member since.
Raina played in India’s first T20 international, a victory over South Africa at Johannesburg in December 2006. He has since been a fairly consistent run-getter and was his country’s second-best scorer at this year’s World T20.
The all-rounder’s return to the international game after his recovery from lung cancer has yielded mixed results. While his batting in the World T20 and Tests versus England has disappointed and saw him dropped in the longest format, he took eight economical wickets in the former with his left-arm spin.
The bowling all-rounder has established himself in all three international forms, with his Test batting lately coming to the fore. Off-spin remains his forte, although T20 has been his least effective international arena with the ball.
An uncapped replacement for the injured Manoj Tiwary ahead of the series, the diminutive Rayudu was touted as India’s next batting superstar a decade ago but has struggled to match that billing.
The leg-spinner is being given a second chance in T20 internationals, having not added to his three format caps in 2010 until the recent World T20. He played twice in that tournament but is in competition with spinners who are better batsmen.
A one-day regular for his country, Jadeja has all the skills to excel in T20 internationals. Principally a batsman, he is also an excellent fielder and bowls useful left-arm spin. Jadeja was called up for the last Test of the series with England.
Dinda is a seamer with a handful of limited-overs internationals, the last prior to this series coming in the World Twenty20 defeat of England. He has been a steady bowler in the Indian Premier League.
Bhuvneshwar has the potential to be a genuine international all-rounder as his impressive first-class and List A batting and bowling averages suggest. His T20 statistics are not so strong, but he has been given the chance to make his India bow in that format.
A seamer with modest Test and one-day international experience but none in T20 internationals, Mithun was India’s third injury call-up before the series. He replaced Vinay Kumar who in turn was selected after Lakshmipathy Balaji was ruled out.
The uncapped medium-pacer’s call-up to the fourth-Test and T20 squads was reward for a rich vein of form. Although lacking express pace, he has been a consistent wicket-taker this domestic season.