Hardik Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav ruled out of upcoming T20I series against Afghanistan

By Real11 - Jan 8 2024 169 Views

Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya ruled out of Afghanistan T20Is

Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, and Ruturaj Gaikwad will be absent from the Indian squad for the upcoming three-match T20I series against Afghanistan, scheduled to commence on January 11. The trio's unavailability poses a challenge for the team management, especially with the T20 World Cup looming on the horizon.

Suryakumar Yadav, who recently led India in the T20Is against South Africa, sustained an ankle injury during the third match in Johannesburg. Following ankle surgery, he is expected to resume training in the coming months, ruling him out of the Afghanistan series.

Hardik Pandya, who exited the ODI World Cup with a ligament tear in November, is still on the path to full recovery. While the BCCI medical staff initially anticipated a swift comeback, Hardik is yet to attain optimal fitness. He is diligently working on his strength and conditioning, with ongoing rehab. As a precautionary measure, the medical team has advised monitoring his workload closely.

Ruturaj Gaikwad's absence due to a finger injury adds to India's selection woes, with his availability for the early stages of the England Test series in doubt.

The Afghanistan series holds significance as India's final bilateral T20I assignment before the T20 World Cup, set to kick off on June 1. The selectors are keen on having their first-choice 15 players available, including Hardik Pandya, who was projected to take over the T20I captaincy post the 2022 T20 World Cup.

The selectors face crucial decisions regarding leadership, given Hardik's uncertain fitness. The Afghanistan series could have been an opportune moment for him to stake his claim as the T20I captain, but his fitness concerns have prompted a cautious approach.

With the Indian T20 League on the horizon, the selectors hope for the return of key players for the final preparations leading up to the T20 World Cup. As the team navigates through these challenges, the focus remains on building a formidable squad for the upcoming global T20 extravaganza.

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