India batsman KL Rahul has been ruled out of the last two Tests of the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy series after he sustained an injury while bathing in the nets at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. He will fly home from Australia.
A statement from the Indian cricket board (BCCI) on Tuesday informed that the wicketkeeper-batsman sprained his left wrist ahead of the third Test of the four-match series.
“KL Rahul sprained his left wrist while batting in the nets at the MCG during Team India’s practice session on Saturday. The wicketkeeper-batsman will not be available for the remaining two Tests of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy as he will need about three weeks’ time to recover completely and regain full strength.”
“He will now return to India and head to the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru for further rehabilitation of his injury,” the statement added.
Even though he was part of both the white ball and red ball squads, Rahul has spent time at the bench during the first two Tests.
However, he was likely to play the third Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground starting Thursday, either in place of Mayank Agarwal as opener or instead of Hanuma Vihari in the middle-order.
His injury comes as another blow for Team India who have already been weakened by the absence of pacers Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav and regular skipper Virat Kohli.
Meanwhile, India on Tuesday defeated Australia by eight wickets in the Boxing-Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Cricket Ground to level the four-match series 1-1.
Set a target of 70 after Australia were dismissed for 200 in their second innings on Tuesday, the Indians got to the target for the loss of opener Mayank Agarwal (5) and No. 3 Cheteshwar Pujara (3).
Shubman Gill, who hit seven fours in a delightful innings, was unbeaten on 35 and skipper Ajinkya Rahane on 27.
Rahane, who scored a gritty hundred in the first innings to lead India’s comeback at the Down Under, said going in with five bowlers worked well.