New Delhi: Promising all-rounder from Jammu and Kashmir Parvez Rassol was today rewarded for his brilliant performance in this season`s Ranji Trophy after he was named in the 14-member India A squad for the practice game against England here on January 6.
Rassol finished on top of both batting and bowling charts for J&K with 594 runs, including two centuries, and 33 wickets.
Rassol, thus, became the first cricketer from the state to have got a call in the India `A` team.
Rassol was detained for questioning three years ago in Bangalore in connection with a suspected presence of explosives at the Chinnaswamy stadium ahead of a Champions League match. But he was given a clean chit a few days later.
"It`s the best news I have ever got. I was one of the better performers for my team in this season`s Ranji Trophy. I had produced good all-round performnaces. So, at the back of mind I was hopeful of making it to the India A team," an ecstatic Rassol told PTI after his selection.
"The fact that J&K`s performance in Ranji this year has been better has also helped my case. I have been playing first class cricket since 2008 but this has been my breakthrough year."
Apart from Rassol, another notable inclusion in the team is out-of-favour India pacer S Sreesanth, who last represented the senior team during India`s tour of England in 2011.
Sreesanth, who made a comeback to the Kerala Ranji team after spending more than a year recuperating from a toe-injury, has picked up 10 wickets from four games he has played this season.
The Abhinav Mukund-led side, however, doesn`t include any player from the sides that have qualified for the quarterfinals of the ongoing Ranji Trophy.
Madhya Pradesh seamer Ishwar Pandey, the top-wicket taker in Ranji Trophy this season, has also been rewarded for his good showing with the ball.
The first 50-over warm-up game will be played at the Palam Cricket Ground. England will also take on Delhi in their second warm-up game at Ferozshah Kotla ground on January 8 prior to the ODI series against India.
India and England will play a five-match ODI series, starting January 11 in Rajkot.
India `A` squad: Abhinav Mukund (C), Murali Vijay, Robin Bist, Kedar Jadhav, Ashok Menaria,
Rohit Motwani (Wk), Jalaj Saxena, Akshay Darekar, Ishwar Pandey, S Sreesanth, Rishi Dhawan,
Paras Dogra, Mohit Sharma, Rasool Parvez.