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    Dhawan to lead in Emerging Players tour

    Shikhar Dhawan will lead in the tournament to be held in Australia from August 1-13.

    Chennai: Left-handed batsman Shikhar Dhawan will lead a 15-member Indian squad at the Emerging Players cricket tournament, scheduled to be held in Australia from August 1-13.

    Top-order batsman Ajinkya Rahane has been named Dhawan's deputy for the 13-day tournament by the Krishnamachari Srikkanth-led BCCI's five-man selection committee here on Saturday.

    Srikkanth Anirudh, Manish Pandey, Saurabh Tiwary, Manoj Tiwary and Ambati Rayudu will shoulder the bulk of the responsibility in batting, besides all-rounder Ashok Menaria, while C Gautam has been selected as one of the wicketkeepers along with Rayudu.

    Leg-spinner Rahul Sharma will lead the spin attack along with slow left-armer Iqbal Abdulla, while Umesh Yadav, R Vinay Kumar, Varun Aaron and Sreenath Aravind will be the four seamers.

    India will kick off the campaign with a match against South Africa's Emerging Players team on the first day of the tournament, before meeting New Zealand (Aug 6-8) and Australian Institute of Sports (AIS) from 11-13.

    India had triumphed in 2009 after Virat Kohli led the team to a 17-run win over South Africa with a rollicking century, but lost to AIS in the deciding match of the last edition.

    Squad: Shikhar Dhawan (captain), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Srikkanth Anirudh, Manish Pandey, Saurabh Tiwary, Manoj Tiwary, Ashok Maneria, C Gautam, Ambati Rayudu, Rahul Sharma, Iqbal Abdulla, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron, Sreenath Aravind, R Vinay Kumar.