World Cup Qualifiers: Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem gets call-up as Igor Stimac names camp for Afghanistan, Oman clash

Igor Stimac named a 26-member probable squad for India's upcoming World Cup qualifier game against Afghanistan and Oman.

Dheeraj Singh (in picture) was a key player in India's team at the U-17 World Cup, two years ago.   -  AP

India national team head coach Igor Stimac named a 26-member squad for India's upcoming World Cup qualifier games against Afghanistan and Oman on Wednesday.

Goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem earned his first senior team call-up from Stimac. Dheeraj, who is with ATK in the Indian Super League (ISL) this year, was part of India's U-17 team which played in the World Cup in 2017. He has also played for the U-23 national side.

Dheeraj, however, has not yet played for ATK this season as the Kolkata-based side started with Arindam Bhattacharja in goal for its three matches.

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Dheeraj's inclusion meant Kamaljit Singh was dropped. Among other notable absentees from the previous camp were Sandesh Jhingan (defender), Nikhil Poojary, Halicharan Narzary (both midfielders) and Balwant Singh (forward).

Jhingan is recovering from an injury and was thus sidelined.

Midfielders Pronay Halder, Seiminlen Doungel, Jackichand Singh - who were all missing in the previous probables list for the Bangladesh clash -  made their way into the team this time.

India will play Afghanistan on November 14 and face Oman five days later, with both matches being played away from home.

Placed in Group E, India is fourth on the points table with two points.

The Blue Tigers lost their Asian qualifiers campaign opener against Oman 1-2 in September but registered back-to-back draws against Qatar (0-0) and Bangladesh (1-1).

The 26-man squad:

Goalkeepers:  Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Amrinder Singh, Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem

Defenders: Pritam Kotal, Nishu Kumar, Rahul Bheke, Anas Edathodika, Narender, Adil Khan, Sarthak Golui, Subhasish Bose, Mandar Rao Dessai

Midfielders: Udanta Singh, Jackichand Singh, Seiminlen Doungel, Raynier Fernandes, Vinit Rai, Sahal Abdul Samad, Pronay Halder, Anirudh Thapa, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Brandon Fernandes, Ashique Kuruniyan

Forwards: Sunil Chhetri, Manvir Singh, Farukh Choudhary.

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