Uncapped fast-bowler Ben Sears will replace O’Rourke in the 13-man squad and will join the team in Christchurch on Tuesday.
India head coach Rahul Dravid on Saturday paid tribute to Australian cricket greats Rodney Marsh and Shane Warne on the sidelines of the first Test against Sri Lanka.
Marsh, a former wicket keeper-batter who suffered a heart attack on his way to a charity event in Queensland, died at an Adelaide hospital on Friday. Hours later, Warne, considered as the great leg-spinner to have ever played the game, died of a suspected heart attack in Thailand.
“Really sad day for the game of cricket. To lose two people in two days, people who truly made the game what it is and truly loved the game, is truly a deep loss. Our thoughts are with both the families, their friends and may their souls rest in peace. I didn’t know Rod that well, met him a few times. But grew up watching a lot of Rodney Marsh and hearing a lot about him,” said Dravid in a video posted by the BCCI.
“But I had the privilege and honour to be able to compete and play against Shane Warne. More importantly the great privilege of getting to know him personally and playing with him and alongside him as a colleague, I think that will probably be one of the highlights of my cricketing career. Just to get to know him personally a lot and spoken about him as a great cricketer and rightly so; we all know a lot about that.”
Dravid had been team-mates with Warne when the duo turned out for the Rajasthan Royals in 2011 IPL after facing off against each other while playing international cricket for India and Australia respectively. “But I think for me what will remain just is the memories of the friendship, of the times we spent together off the field and just the ability to connect. I think that was what was great about Shane Warne.”
“Even if you didn’t meet him very often, he would make it feel like this was personal. It really feels like a really personal loss. It’s something that really hurts; it’s sad. As long as the game is being played, someone like Shane Warne and Rodney Marsh will always be remembered,” concluded Dravid.