India on Saturday left out most of the younger players, who featured in the pre-Olympic qualifiers against Myanmar, in the 23-member squad announced for the 2012 AFC Challenge Cup qualifying round tournament starting on March 21 in Kuala Lumpur.
The AIFF had announced 44 probables but on Saturday pruned down the squad to 23, leaving out the players mostly from the Indian Arrows I-League side.
Those from the Olympic qualifiers team which made it to the AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers include Indian Arrows captain Raju Gaekwad and his club mates Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Shilton D'Silva, Jewel Sheikh Raja, Jeje Lalpekhulua and Viva Kerala player C S Sabeeth.
The AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers squad still have senior players in the likes of Subrata Pal, Sunil Chhetri, Anwar, Syed Rahim Nabi, Gouramangi Moirangthem and Steven Dias. Bob Houghton, whose contract the AIFF want to terminate for his alleged derogatory remarks against Indian football, will coach the side.
The players will have a preparatory camp in Malaysia from March 15. The qualifiers are slated to be held from March 21 to March 25.
India are clubbed in Group B along with Chinese Taipei, Turkmenistan and Pakistan. India will take on Chinese Taipei on March 21 before locking horns with Pakistan on March 23 and Turkmenistan on March 25.
Goalkeepers: Arindam Bhattacharya, Subrata Pal, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.
Defenders: Anwar, Nirmal Chhetri, Denzil Franco, Raju Gaekwad, N S Manju, Nalappan Mohanraj, Syed Rahim Nabi, Gouramangi Moirangthem, Govin Moirangthem.
Midfielders: Joaquim Abranches, Shilton D'Silva, Steven Dias, Rakesh Masih, Jewel Sheikh Raja, Baldeep Singh, Jagpreet Singh Strikers: Sunil Chhetri, Jeje Lalpekhulua, C S Sabeeth, Sushil Kumar Singh.