Although the Indian cricket team suffered from a bad batting performance in the first New Zealand Test, there was comparatively a better output from the bowling squad. However, before the second Test tomorrow, a bad news is woeing the supporters. The respectable performance from the Indian bowlers in the first Test was led by Ishant Sharma, who returned to the pitch following an injury, and stunned with a 5 wicket haul. Unfortunately, there are speculations that the veteran pacer might be missing out the second match, as there are doubts raising for another injury.
Sources have stated that Sharma arrived for practice today, but had to leave the nets after feeling pain in his right ankle. He was taken for a checkup, and after the reports arrive, it will determine if the pacer will be deemed fit for tomorrow’s game at Christchurch or not.
Sharma’s six weeks of injury leave before the New Zealand series happened due to an ankle injury he sustained during a Ranji Trophy match back in January, and his recent discomfort may be a relapse of that.
The 31 year old was stunning against the Kiwis in the first match, and picked up five wickets in the first innings, while churning out an impressive economy rate of 3.04. This was also Sharma’s 11th 5 wicket haul in Red ball cricket.
The brilliantly in-form Sharma’s absence from the second Test might be a big blow for Kohli and the squad, who are eyeing a 1-1 series draw in tomorrow’s match, which will conclude the lengthy tour of New Zealand.
However, in case of the seamer’s absence from the Men in Blue squad, Umesh Yadav or Navdeep Saini will take his place. However, its more likely to be the more experienced Yadav, than Saini who is yet to earn his first Test cap for India.
Yadav, who has earned 45 Test caps for India, expressed his dissent for not being a part of the regular squad. “I am eager to play red-ball cricket in New Zealand. I have performed well in recent times and I’m in good touch too. My series against Bangladesh was good too. I am pretty positive about my selection for New Zealand Test series.” Yadav said last month.
The 32 year old fast bowler made his last international appearance in the Bangladesh Test series back in November 2019, and stated that he would prove himself on the pitch again. “If I am selected, I am going to give my 100 percent. I have worked a lot on my line and length. I am hoping for the best.”
It appears Yadav may finally have his return to the Indian team tomorrow.