Opener Shikhar Dhawan will stay back in England and his thumb injury will be assessed by the team management before making a final call on his availability. Contrary to reports, the BCCI is yet to name a replacement for the 33-year old opener.
The BCCI confirmed the news via a tweet:
Team India opening batsman Mr Shikhar Dhawan is presently under the observation of the BCCI medical team. The team management has decided that Mr Dhawan will continue to be in England and his progress will be monitored. #TeamIndia pic.twitter.com/8f1RelCsXf
— BCCI (@BCCI) June 11, 2019
In what seemed like a major blow for India, it was announced Dhawan has been ruled out of action for three weeks with a fractured thumb. The injury to Dhawan occurred when he was hit by a delivery by Nathan Coulter-Nile when India faced off against Australia at the Oval. He was India’s star performer during the match, scoring a brilliant century which helped India to 36 run victory.
Dhawan has been one of India’s most consistent performers, forming a formidable top-three with Rohit Sharma and skipper Virat Kohli. He also has an exceptional record in the ICC tournaments, with 6 centuries to his name.
With Dhawan’s injury, KL Rahul who travelled with the squad as a reserve opener and has been batting at No.4 will open the batting along with Rohit Sharma. The debate over the No.4 slot will again open up with Dinesh Karthik and Vijay Shankar likely to compete to get into the lineup.
Reports had earlier suggested that the team management would likely name a replacement for Dhawan in the squad. The names of Rishabh Pant, Ambati Rayudu and Shreyas Iyer were mooted as the likely replacements.
But the Indian team management has decided that taking up a patient approach with an injury to such a crucial member of the squad is the right way to go about.