India just can't seem to avoid bad news a day before heading into a Test on this tour. While Zaheer Khan was ruled out a day before the Centurion Test, this time it is Gautam Gambhir whose fate hangs in the balance.
The left-hander was hit on his hand while facing a barrage of bouncers from Morne Morkel in the first Test at Centurion. He showed no discomfort while batting in the nets or during the fielding sessions after the Test. However, on Saturday, he was probably hit on the same spot while batting in the nets, which caused swelling in his hand. Although the opener sat for quite a while in the nets with an ice bag on the injured hand, the swelling didn't appear to have subsided till he left the stadium. "We will take a decision on him just an hour before the start of the match," said team manager Ranjib Biswal.
India have a relatively tested replacement in Murali Vijay. He has been the back-up opener for some time now and has impressed everytime. He scored 139, his maiden Test century, in his previous test against Australia in Bangalore as Gambhir’s injury replacement.