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  5. KL Rahul ruled out of 3rd Test against England due to injury, Karnataka batter named replacement

KL Rahul ruled out of 3rd Test against England due to injury, Karnataka batter named replacement

KL Rahul is the latest injury concern for India to deal with apart from the ongoing absence of Ravindra Jadeja and Mohammed Shami as the middle-order batter's time on the sidelines is set to extend. Rahul, who missed the second Test against England will sit out of the third game as well.

Anshul Gupta Edited By: Anshul Gupta @oyegupta_ New Delhi Updated on: February 13, 2024 6:09 IST
KL Rahul will continue to be on the sidelines during the
Image Source : GETTY KL Rahul will continue to be on the sidelines during the third Test against England

KL Rahul is the latest injury blow that the Indian cricket team has to deal with during the ongoing five-match Test series against England as the middle-order batter is set to miss the third match in Rajkot. Rahul, along with Ravindra Jadeja, missed the second Test against England in Visakhapatnam owing to a right quadriceps injury.

It was expected that Rahul will be available for selection in the third Test with the nature of the injury not being that serious, however, the BCCI has confirmed that the 31-year-old wasn't able to regain full fitness before the Rajkot clash. "Mr. Rahul has reached 90 per cent of match fitness and is progressing well under the supervision of the BCCI Medical Team. He will continue his recovery process at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru to be completely match-fit for the fourth and fifth Test," the BCCI in a statement said.

Rahul being ruled out means a potentially well-deserved debut for Sarfaraz Khan, who has waited for his chance for the longest.

The BCCI confirmed that Karnataka left-hander Devdutt Padikkal, who has been smashing centuries for fun in the Ranji Trophy, replaced Rahul in the squad for the third Test. Padikkal has smashed four centuries including the best of 193 and a fifty in his last six first-class matches (four in Ranji Trophy and two for India A). Padikkal is currently averaging 92.67 having scored 556 runs in just four matches so far in the Ranji Trophy.

As per BCCI in the official release, "participation of Ravindra Jadeja and KL Rahul is subject to fitness clearance from the BCCI medical team" at the time of the announcement of the squad for the remaining three Tests. The rest of the squad remained the same, apart from Shreyas Iyer getting dropped following a lean patch in the red-ball cricket. Jadeja is likely to be fit for the third Test at his home ground.

Rahul's injury means India will be fielding a comparatively young middle-order against England yet again featuring Shubman Gill, Rajat Patidar and Sarfaraz likely at No. 3, 4 and 5 with Dhruv Jurel, the wicketkeeper, set to be another debutant following KS Bharat's meagre returns with the bat.

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