Shikhar Dhawan aborts practice session, raises injury concern ahead of Afghanistan Test | cricket | Hindustan Times
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Shikhar Dhawan aborts practice session, raises injury concern ahead of Afghanistan Test

Shikhar Dhawan may not play in the one-off Test against Afghanistan after he aborted the practice session abruptly on the eve of the historic match.

cricket Updated: Jun 13, 2018 22:03 IST
Press Trust of India, Bangalore
Shikhar Dhawan raised injury concerns ahead of the one-off Test against Afghanistan.
Shikhar Dhawan raised injury concerns ahead of the one-off Test against Afghanistan.(PTI)

Shikhar Dhawan’s curtailed practice session on Wednesday raised serious doubts about his participation in the historic one-off Test against Afghanistan in Bangalore.

Even though it still is not confirmed what actually happened to Dhawan, his unavailability on Thursday could possible open the door for Karun Nair in the middle-order.

In case Dhawan is unable to play, KL Rahul is set to open the batting along side Murali Vijay and Nair is likely to find a place in middle-order.

READ | Afghanistan set for historic inaugural Test against India

Unlike Vijay, who was rested for the optional practice session, Dhawan did turn up for training but was conspicuous by absence at the net session.

Dhawan stated off by doing some running between the wickets drill but looked gingerly and clearly in some discomfort. He was then seen talking to Indian team fitness trainer Shankar Basu and physio Patrick Farhat and after that he didn’t take part in the customary net session where Rahul spent extended time.

All the bowlers (two frontline pacers Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav along with spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja) save Kuldeep Yadav and Navdeep Saini were rested. Ditto for all-rounder Hardik Pandya.

READ | Afghanistan skipper Asghar Stanikzai not nervous, a nation awaits historic day

The other big question is whether they will go with an extra spinner in chinaman Kuldeep Yadav, who might play Tests in England. Ashwin (311) and Jadeja (165), with a collective 476 wickets between them, are expected to play but going by the nature of the Chinnaswamy track, there will be turn on offer, which might prompt them to keep an additional spinner in the side.

“The track definitely looked more brownish than yesterday (on the drier side) and you never know how it will look tomorrow. One thing is for sure that there will be turn on offer,” Afghanistan coach Phil Simmons said today.

In that case, Hardik Pandya is likely to share the new ball with Ishant Sharma with Umesh Yadav sitting out.

However, Umesh has bowled some fantastic spells at the Chinnaswamy during the IPL and also has been one of India’s better pacers in home conditions.