On November 23, Mumbai middle-order bat Suryakumar Yadav earned a backdoor entry into India’s Test squad for the series at home against New Zealand (starting November 25), as it emerged that opener KL Rahul has picked up an injury.
PBKS captain has been sidelined from the two Tests versus the Kiwis in Kanpur and Mumbai because of a strain in his left thigh. The elegant batter will now be undergoing rehab at the NCA in Bangalore in the hope to try and be fit for the tour of South Africa next month.
As per a report from ESPNcricinfo,
“Indian team management is optimistic about Rahul’s recovery, which they expect will be in time for the senior batter to board the flight for the tour of South Africa in December.”
There were reports doing the rounds that Rahul will be missing the Kanpur Test due to an injury before BCCI confirmed those, stating clearly that the player has gone down with a thigh strain and is ruled out of not just the first Test but also the second in Mumbai, starting December 3.
It comes across as a big blow to the player, who had made a promising return to the Test side in England. Batting in challenging conditions at the top of the order, Rahul finished as India’s second-highest run-scorer with 315 runs from 8 innings, including a magnificent hundred at Lord’s.
The home series against New Zealand would’ve been an ideal opportunity for Rahul to add some more runs to his kitty before boarding the flight to South Africa for one more difficult overseas trip at this stage of his career.
But Rahul’s misfortune has given an opportunity to Yadav, who has become an integral part of India’s white-ball set-up since the start of the year. Suryakumar was also part of India’s touring contingent to England but is yet to make his Test debut.
The freeflowing right-hand batter has played 77 first-class matches with 5,326 runs at an average of 44.01.