Team India suffered a major blow ahead of the third Test, which starts on February 15, against England in Rajkot. KL Rahul has been ruled out of the Rajkot Test due to injury. KL along with Jasprit Bumrah was due to join the team on Monday in Rajkot but the Karnataka batter has not left the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru yet.?
Meanwhile, Devdutt Padikkal has been named KL Rahul's replacement in the third Test, according to a ESPNcricinfo report.
Rahul was included for the final three Tests pending fitness clearance. The Karnataka batter had previously missed the second Test in Visakhapatnam because of a quadricep injury.
How KL Rahul's omission complicates things for India?
In the absence of Rahul, India's middle order is certainly going to be very inexperienced given Virat Kohli is also unavailable for selection and Shreyas Iyer has not been picked for the remaining three matches against England.?
Rahul's absence means India will have atleast two players in the middle-order who has played one or making debut for India.
Rajat Patidar was handed debut in the second Test and it is expected that Sarfaraz Khan will debut for India in the Rajkot. However, it won't come as a surprise if India hands in debut to left-handed batter Padikkal who can provide variety to batting order. In that case, Washington Sundar would also be in mix for a selection given his batting prowess.?
What is the fitness update of Ravindra Jadeja?
It is still not clear whether Ravindra Jadeja will be fit for the Rajkot.
Why Devdutt Padikkal gets the national call-up?
Padikkal has been in tremendous form in the Ranji Trophy 2023-24. He is expected to join Team India on February 13 after he hit 151 and 36 against Tamil Nadu in Chennai.
23-year-old Padikkal has amassed 556 runs in six innings at an average of 92.66 in Ranji Trophy 2023-24, hitting three centuries with 193 in being his highest score against Punjab.
Padikkal was also part of India A squad which clashed against England Lions. He had scores of 65, 21 and 105 for India A against England's A side. The Karnataka batter was also part of India A touring party in to the rainbow nation in December.
|Devdutt Padikkal’s batting records