Indian fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar has recovered completely from his lower back injury, which had ruled him out of the first three England v India Tests.
Though he did not recover in time for the final two Tests of the series, which England are leading 2-1, Kumar has been drafted into the India A squad, who will take on South Africa A in the third-place play-off of the ongoing quadrangular series on Wednesday, August 29.
Kumar had been undergoing intense rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru. The 28-year-old had aggravated his injury during the limited-overs leg of India’s tour to Ireland and England, and the third ODI against England at Headingley in July was his last international appearance.
He seemed to have been carrying the injury for some time as he was rested from India’s triangular series in Sri Lanka in March and also missed a few IPL 2018 games in April and May. He was then also rested from the one-off Test against Afghanistan in June keeping in mind the England tour.
While Kumar’s loss has been big for India – he was India’s most successful bowler on their previous tour of England, picking up 19 wickets from five Tests at 26.63 – the selectors have decided not to rush him back into the national squad before giving him some game time.
Kumar has played 21 Tests for India and has picked up 63 wickets at 26.09. India’s final two Tests against England will be played from August 30 to September 3 at Ageas Bowl in Southampton and from September 7 to 11 at The Oval.