Karthik replaces injured Pandey in Champions Trophy squad

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But his form during this year's Indian Premier League has been excellent, with 361 runs in 14 matches at 36.10.

Manish Pandey might have been on cloud nine after he was selected to represent India in the upcoming Champions Trophy, but it has now turned sour for the middle order batsman, who has been ruled out of the ICC event due to left side strain.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik will replace the Karnataka player in the 15-member squad. His average was 86 plus and scored the runs at a strike rate of over 100.

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Virat Kohli & Co start their title defence on June 4 against arch-rivals Pakistan at Edgbaston.

Karthik was out for a duck in Gujarat Lions' loss to Sunrisers Hyderabad to sign off on their IPL existence, but he made 40, 35 not out and 65 in his three previous innings at the Twenty20 tournament. It also includes two centuries and four fifties as well. Karthik was the leading run-getter for Tamil Nadu with 607 runs in the Vijay Hazare Trophy this season. Karthik's inclusion will boost the middle-order.

Seasoned wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik was on Thursday called as a replacement for injured batsman Manish Pandey for next month's International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions Trophy. He has played 23 Tests, 71 ODIs and 9 T20Is for India. They then take on Sri Lanka on June 8 before playing their final group game against South Africa on June 11.

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