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Monday 20 November 2017
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Hardik Pandya rested for upcoming Sri Lanka Tests

Report: Rakesh Sinha
Published : Saturday 11 November, 2017 12:16 AM
Hardik Pandya rested for upcoming Sri Lanka Tests

Hardik Pandya has been pulled out of the squad for the first two Tests against Sri Lanka due to begin on November 16. A media release from the BCCI said the selection committee had taken the call in consultation with the team management so as to lessen the allrounder's chances of injury. "Considering Mr Pandya's heavy recent workload, the decision was made to negate any possibility of a major injury concern. Mr Pandya will undergo a period of strength at conditioning at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru."

Pandya, 24, has made himself an important part of India's combination. He has been involved in 30 out of 33 matches, across formats, since the start of the Champions Trophy. In fact, since June, no one has bowled more overs than his 147.2 in ODI cricket. He struck a fifty on Test debut against Sri Lanka in July and followed it up with a boundary-laden century in Pallekele. His contributions were arguably greater in limited-overs cricket, when he helped India dominate Australia over five ODIs and won the Man of the Series award.

While Pandya being rested may reduce the team's firepower a bit, this decision fits in line with the rotation policy that has been followed by the selectors in recent times. They have kept India's frontline spinners in Test cricket, R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, on the sidelines in ODIs and T20Is. Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav have been treated in much the same way, kept aside for the longest format.

Out of these bowlers only Jadeja is playing the fifth round of the Ranji Trophy, which began on Thursday a week out from the first Test against Sri Lanka at Eden Gardens. However, several of India's first-choice batsmen - Cheteshwar Pujara, M Vijay, Ajinkya Rahane and KL Rahul - and their wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha turned up for their state teams.

Hardik Pandya has been pulled out of the squad for the first two Tests against Sri Lanka due to begin on November 16. A media release from the BCCI said the selection committee had taken the call in consultation with the team management so as to lessen the allrounder's chances of injury. "Considering Mr Pandya's heavy recent workload, the decision was made to negate any possibility of a major injury concern. Mr Pandya will undergo a period of strength at conditioning at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru."

Pandya, 24, has made himself an important part of India's combination. He has been involved in 30 out of 33 matches, across formats, since the start of the Champions Trophy. In fact, since June, no one has bowled more overs than his 147.2 in ODI cricket. He struck a fifty on Test debut against Sri Lanka in July and followed it up with a boundary-laden century in Pallekele. His contributions were arguably greater in limited-overs cricket, when he helped India dominate Australia over five ODIs and won the Man of the Series award.

While Pandya being rested may reduce the team's firepower a bit, this decision fits in line with the rotation policy that has been followed by the selectors in recent times. They have kept India's frontline spinners in Test cricket, R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, on the sidelines in ODIs and T20Is. Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav have been treated in much the same way, kept aside for the longest format.

Out of these bowlers only Jadeja is playing the fifth round of the Ranji Trophy, which began on Thursday a week out from the first Test against Sri Lanka at Eden Gardens. However, several of India's first-choice batsmen - Cheteshwar Pujara, M Vijay, Ajinkya Rahane and KL Rahul - and their wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha turned up for their state teams.

 

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