Big set-back for India; Star in-form batter will miss the first test against Australia- Report
India and Australia will play the next edition of the four-match Border-Gavaskar series in India. The first game to take place at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Nagpur, will start on February 9, Thursday. This series will be crucial for Rohit Sharma and his team in the ongoing World Test Championship.
The Australian team reached India on Wednesday and will have a four-day practise camp in Bengaluru before moving to Nagpur for the first game. However, amid all the preparations for the hosts, India suffered a big setback.
Star Indian middle-order batter Shreyas Iyer has been ruled out of the first Test in Nagpur. The BCCI announced India's squad for the first two tests. And Iyer's absence will undoubtedly be felt by India, as he has been in excellent form over the last year or so.
Earlier, Iyer skipped the T20I series against New Zealand to recover from the back injury. But as per some media reports, it has been learned that the 28-year-old has been ruled out of the first test against Australia. He hasn't completely recovered from his injury and needs one more week.
Thus, it will be a big question as to who will replace him. Rishabh Pant is already not part of the team after suffering a car accident, and without Iyer, India might find it hard in the middle order. Meanwhile, Virat Kohli has yet to achieve his best form in the longest format.
With no Iyer or Pant in the team, Surykumar Yadav might get a chance to make his test debut for India. He has been in tremendous form with the bat in the shorter format and has been scoring runs at a higher strike rate consistently. He can bat at No. 5 and be a surprise package at that position. Suryakumar can also play both spin and pace well.
India needed to win the upcoming BGT series against Australia to secure their place in the WTC final. But they need to make sure that the winning margin must be 3-1 or 3-0 for a clear qualification. If they lose the series, it will be the end of their WTC campaign.