The Virat Kohli-led Team India will miss the services of Ajinkya Rahane, Ishant Sharma and ace all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja in the second and final Test against New Zealand in Mumbai after the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) informed that all three players have sustained injuries.
Issuing a statement on Friday, just before the scheduled start of the second Test, the board informed about the development.
Issuing a statement, the BCCI said: “Fast bowler Ishant Sharma dislocated his left little finger during the final day of the 1st Test match in Kanpur. He is thus ruled out of the 2nd Test in Mumbai. The BCCI Medical team will continue to monitor his progress.”
“All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja suffered a right forearm injury during the 1st Test match in Kanpur. After undergoing scans, he was diagnosed with a swelling on his forearm. He has been advised rest and is thus ruled out of the 2nd Test in Mumbai,” it added.
Further informing about Rahane, who was the stand-in skipper of the Indian team in the absence of regular skipper Kohli in Kanpur, it said: “Ajinkya Rahane sustained a minor left hamstring strain while fielding on the final day of the 1st Test match in Kanpur. Since he has not recovered completely, he has been ruled out of the 2nd Test in Mumbai. His progress will be closely monitored by the BCCI Medical team.”
Earlier on Thursday, Kohli had revealed that Wriddhiman Saha, who had batted in the Kanpur Test despite a stiff neck and scored a half-century, has recovered and is now fit and will be available for selection for the second Test against New Zealand.
Addressing the media on the eve of the fixture, Kohli said: “As of now, he (Saha) is fit. He has recovered from his neck spasm and is absolutely fine.”
On Wednesday, bowling coach Paras Mhambrey had said that newly appointed head coach Rahul Dravid and Kohli were involved in regular conversation with the physios, who were assessing Saha’s recovery and had hinted that the hosts’ team management would take a call closer to the game.
Notably, K.S. Bharat had kept wickets in place of Saha in the first Test in Kanpur.
“We will discuss the combination soon. There is a weather change, and we have to take that into account, and we have to pick the combination accordingly. At the end of the day, you cannot predict whether conditions will remain like this over the five days. So, we need to see what bowling combination should be picked that can tackle in different conditions,” Kohli said.
Meanwhile, with the bio-secure environment taking a toll on the players’ mental health, Kohli also stressed on the need to be given breaks to recover from the fatigue and not just for workload management.
“Important to refresh mentally. To practice in a place where we didn’t have a structured environment or with no cameras makes a huge difference. To maintain the quality we must consider such things. Managing workload is more important from the mental point of view,” Kohli had said in the pre-match press conference.