Cricket
Mon, 11 Jan 2021

Hanuma Vihari ruled out of the final test; Shardul Thakur slated to replace Ravindra Jadeja

Hanuma Vihari ruled out of the final test; Shardul Thakur slated to replace Ravindra Jadeja

One of the key protagonists in India’s great escape in Sydney, Hanuma Vihari will not partake in the final test against Australia in Brisbane. The batsman has reportedly suffered a hamstring tear which is expected to keep him out of the squad for the home series against England as well. 

Vihari was taken for scans to understand the extent of the injury following the end of day’s play. He and Rishabh Pant were given multiple pain killers to continue with their match-defining innings. The results of the scans are expected to arrive soon, upon which a proper estimation can be determined.

Despite the scan results not being out as of yet, a source from BCCI has claimed that the injury does not look good and he won’t be able to recover in time for the fourth and final test which is only 3 days away.

Hanuma Vihari ruled out of the final test; Shardul Thakur slated to replace Ravindra Jadeja
Image Courtesy: SportsRush/Hindustan Times

Another source added that even if the injury is diagnosed as a grade 1 tear, he will require a month to recover and further rehabilitation time, which puts his participation for the four-match test series against England in serious doubt.

“The extent of Vihari’s tear can only be ascertained after the scan reports come through. But even if it’s a grade 1 tear, he is out for at least four weeks and then will need some rehabilitation time. So it’s not only the Brisbane Test but also, he won’t be a part of England Tests at home,” 

India are currently running thin on options due to the injury crisis that has dawned upon them. Vihari is expected to be replaced with a batsman in the playing eleven. The squad currently has only two batsmen on the bench at their disposal with both being openers. The only other alternative would be to field two wicket-keeper batsmen, in which case in-form Rishabh Pant would don the role of a pure batsman.

On the other hand, struggling Prithvi Shaw is not even in contention for a spot in the team for the final test.

Moreover, as far as Ravindra Jadeja’s replacement is concerned, the team are willing to go with the experienced Shardul Thakur ahead of the left-arm seamer T Natarajan. This would mean that the visitors will field only one spinner while maintaining their five-bowler strategy.

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