Experienced fast bowler Ishant Sharma was ruled out of the first Test match against New Zealand starting September 22 due to chikungunya, chief coach Anil Kumble said on Tuesday.
“Ishant Sharma is recovering from chikungunya and will not be available for the first Test match. We have not asked for any replacement and will choose our first XI from the available 14,” said Kumble.
Chikungunya, apart from the mosquito-borne dengue, is on a feverish high in the Capital this year.
Though the number of dengue cases this year is high, hospitals across the city are receiving more patients with classic chikungunya symptoms — high-grade fever for four or five days along with severe joint pains.
Ishant is a resident of West Delhi’s Patel Nagar area. He is the most experienced of India’s four pacers with 209 wickets from 72 Tests.
If India happen to go in with two pacers, then the likely choices will be Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.