Hardik Pandya asked to prove fitness by National Cricket Academy
Hardik Pandya is yet to fully recover from a back injury he suffered during the Asia Cup in the United Arab Emirates in September.
It seems the BCCI selection committee does not want to rush Pandya’s comeback as he been asked to rest and work on improving fitness by the medical staff at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, according to a report in the ESPNCricinfo.
Pandya, who was part of the India A squad for the third and final four-day unofficial Test against New Zealand A and also three one-dayers, will now miss the competitive matches.
But Pandya is likely to be seen back in action in Baroda’s Ranji Trophy match against Mumbai from December 14.
Pandya had suffered a lower-back injury during India’s match against Pakistan at the Asia Cup. Pandya had to be carried off on a stretcher after he landed awkwardly in his delivery stride following the fifth ball of his fourth over.
The injury ruled him out of the tournament that India went on to win for the seventh time.
The 25-year-old was recently seen smoking at Sakshi Dhoni’s birthday bash. However, the all-rounder was a couple of days later seen sweating at nets.
Pandya is a key member of the Indian side and the team management would hope for him to recover in time for the ODIs in Australia in January. India will play a three-match ODI series from January 12-18.
In Hardik’s absence, his elder brother Krunal Pandya is making the most of the opportunities in the national side.
After a good debut against the Windies in the T20Is, Krunal was also picked for the T20 series in Australia. Krunal became the third most expensive Indian bowler in a Twenty20 International when he conceded 55 runs without picking a wicket in the first T20 against Australia in Brisbane last week.
However, the all-rounder produced a better performance in the second game before his match-winning show in the third T20 that helped India level the series against Australia.
Krunal set a new record in the third and final match against Australia on Sunday as he registered the best bowling figures by an Indian in the format on Australian soil.
Krunal picked up a four-wicket haul and gave away just 36 runs from his four overs to help India restrict Australia to 164 for 6. India then rode on Virat Kohli’s unbeaten fifty to chase down the target with 6 wickets in hand.