New Zealand captain Kane Williamson has been ruled out of the second and final Test against hosts India, scheduled to begin at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. with a long-standing left elbow injury.
The Kiwi skipper had picked up the injury during the first Test in Kanpur Test, which had ended in a draw.
In his absence, Tom Latham, who played a key role for New Zealand in earning a draw in Kanpur, will now lead the side.
New Zealand head coach Gary Stead confirmed about Williamson’s injury and felt that the increased batting load in the Test format has brought back the problems for the skipper.
“It’s been a really tough time for Kane having to deal with such a persistent injury,” Stead said.
“While we’ve been able to manage the injury through the year and the T20 World Cup, the shift to Test cricket and the increased batting loading has re-aggravated his elbow. Ultimately the injury is still not right and while he got through the Kanpur Test, it was clear playing in the second Test wasn’t an option,” he added.
Williamson had earlier missed the Bangladesh ODIs, the first part of IPL 2021 in India as well as the Edgbaston Test against England in the build up to the World Test Championship final due to the left elbow injury.
Earlier on Friday, India’s Ajinkya Rahane, Ishant Sharma and ace all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja were also ruled out of the Mumbai Test 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 ok 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.”