Leg-spinner Rahul Sharma's family elated over his selection

Family and relatives of leg-spinner Rahul Sharma, who has earned a call for India's ODI series against England, have expressed their delight over his selection in the ODI team.

Ecstatic relatives and well wishers of the right-handed leg break and googly bowler rejoiced his selection at his residence here on Thursday by distributing sweets.

Rahul Sharma's mother Indu Sharma was extremely delighted over his selection in the team.

"We are extremely happy, this feeling can not be explained in words because of our child''s induction in the national team. It was not only his but the family's dream to see him in the national team, which has now been fulfilled," said Indu Sharma.

"He is a hard worker due to which today he is reaping the results. I would pray to God that he gives such children to every parent," she added.

Rahul's coach Davinder Arora also expressed his happiness over his selection and even compared him to former ace cricketer Anil Kumble.

"The speciality of Rahul is his height which is of great advantage to him as the bounce on any wicket can vary and even if does not get the turn, then he can make the batsman out by using the bounce. Secondly in my opinion, the Indian team has now found its replacement for Anil Kumble," said Arora.

"Just like Harbhajan Singh if Rahul bowls from one end of the wicket, then I think it would be of great advantage to the national team," he added.

Rahul Sharma, who plays for Punjab will look to make the opportunity count and has the experience in domestic matches to bank on. He has been a prolific player for Punjab and proved his skills in the Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament as well, after being picked by the Pune Warriors.

The Indian selectors, who met on Thursday overlooked off-spinner Harbhajan Singh and drafted in the uncapped S. Aravind and Rahul Sharma for the first two one-day internationals (ODIs) against England next month.

Top four players of the Indian cricket team including Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh and Zaheer Khan were also left out of the squad due to injury.

The 16-member Indian squad comprises Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Gautam Gambhir, Parthiv Patel, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Varun Aaron, Umesh Yadav, Vinay Kumar, Sreenath Aravind, Rahul Sharma, Manoj Tiwary and Praveen Kumar.

The first two games of the five-match ODI series against England will be played in Hyderabad on October 14 and New Delhi on October 17. The other matches will be held in Mohali (Oct 20), Mumbai (Oct 23) and Kolkata (Oct 25).

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