Wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant is the latest Indian player to head to the National Cricket Academy for treatment, after being struck on the helmet and suffering a concussion during the first ODI against Australia.
Pant played an awkward pull shot off a Pat Cummins bouncer in the first game in Mumbai, which deflected onto his helmet, before popping to point for a simple catch. Pant walked back to the pavilion unassisted, but was soon diagnosed with a concussion and didn’t participate in Australia’s innings. He has been ruled out of the second ODI in Rajkot.
He was flown for observation to the NCA in Bangalore, which is the venue for the third ODI. BCCI have opted against bringing in a replacement and it’s likely that KL Rahul, who took the gloves in the first game, will keep them in the second.
Rishabh Pant “under observation” after being hit by Cummins short ball. KL Rahul keeps wicket in India’s defence of 255.https://t.co/CeemOhP9zP
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) January 14, 2020
Meanwhile, opening batsman Prithvi Shaw has been put on the flight to New Zealand for the ‘A’ series after recovering from a shoulder injury, which he sustained during a Ranji Trophy game for Mumbai. Should he perform well, he could put himself in contention for the Test series in New Zealand, which starts in late February.
The 20-year-old Shaw has played two Tests for India and scored 234 runs at an average of 118.5, but things haven’t been rosy for him since then. First he picked up an ankle injury in a tour game in Sydney before the 2018/19 Tests in Australia. Then he copped a doping suspension from BCCI in July 2019. The latest shoulder injury threatened to keep him out of the ‘A’ series, but he will hope to make the most of his tour now.
In more injury-related news, fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar is set to start rehab at the NCA after successfully undergoing sports hernia surgery in London on January 11.
Earlier in the week, India had received less positive news about all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who was replaced in the India A squad as his rehab was “taking longer than expected”.