Virat Kohli MS Dhoni India
Skipper MS Dhoni and his deputy Virat Kohli will be key men for India at the World CupReuters

The 15 men who have the unenviable/enviable – depending on your half-full/half-empty perspective – job of defending the World Cup title that India won so famously in 2011 in Mumbai were announced, with no major surprises sprung, even if there were a couple of "now that is interesting" selections.

MS Dhoni will lead an India team almost completely bereft of the squad that led India to the world title, with that new generation now looking to etch their own places in history.

Skipper Dhoni and vice-captain Virat Kohli are joined by familiar faces in Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma, with Jadeja picked despite worries over a shoulder injury which forced him back home from the Australia tour.

It was also revealed that Ishant has a slight knee injury, which kept him out of the 4th Test against Australia in Sydney, but it is not expected to be much of a concern heading into the World Cup next month.

Jadeja MKII -- Akshar Patel – is also in the World Cup squad, due reward for his outstanding performances whenever he has been given a chance.

Joining them in the squad are Umesh Yadav, Ambati Rayudu, that hundred and good form against the West Indies working in his favour, and Stuart Binny, India's lone medium-pace bowling all-rounder option, with the likes of Mohit Sharma, who picked up a hat-trick for Haryana in the Ranji Trophy on Tuesday, Karn Sharma, Amit Mishra, Robin Uthappa and Varun Aaron missing out.

Murali Vijay, who has been in wonderful form for India in the Australia Test series Down Under, was also left out, with the fact that he last played an ODI match in July, 2013 probably going against him. After all, Rahane can fill in as an opener if Dhawan and Rohit don't come off.

Of course, the heavyweight players Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Zaheer Khan, Gautam Gambhir and Harbhajan Singh were never realistically in contention to sneak into that 15-man team having been ignored from the 30-man probables list.

Reports on Monday suggested Yuvraj would be considered by the BCCI Selection Committee, which met in Mumbai on Tuesday, owing to his outstanding first-class form – he's struck three straight hundreds -- and uncertainly over Jadeja's fitness, but unsurprisingly that proved to be off the mark as the man of the series from the last World Cup was left on the sidelines.

The same team will play in the tri-series against Australia and England, with Mohit Sharma and Dhawal Kulkarni the extra inclusions – cover for the fast bowlers, no doubt, in case of injury problems.

The ICC Cricket 50-over World Cup, to be played in Australia and New Zealand, begins on 14 February.

Squad: MS Dhoni (capt), Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Ravindra Jadeja, Akshar Patel, Stuart Binny, R Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav.

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