Rohit Sharma has been dominated out of the Take a look at leg of India’s tour of South Africa with an injuries to his left hamstring. The Gujarat opener Priyank Panchal has been drafted into the squad as his substitution.
ESPNcricinfo has realized that Rohit suffered the injuries in the course of a net session in advance of the India squad entered quarantine in Mumbai, from wherever they are scheduled to journey to South Africa this 7 days.
For Rohit, this is the second big tour affected by injuries in the previous 12 months. He only showcased in the 3rd and fourth Tests of India’s 2020-21 tour of Australia, lacking the very first two Tests because of to a hamstring injuries picked up in the course of IPL 2020.
Rohit’s absence will be a blow to India’s preparations presented he has been their highest Take a look at operate-getter in 2021, and a single of only two batters – Rishabh Pant becoming the other – with a forty-plus average from ten or more innings. He had also been named vice-captain of the Take a look at squad, apart from getting in excess of as total-time captain in the white-ball formats.
It continues to be to be seen if India will hand the vice-captaincy back to the out-of-type Ajinkya Rahane, or identify a new deputy to Virat Kohli.
KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal are the other openers in India’s Take a look at squad apart from the uncapped Panchal.
Considering that shifting to the top of the buy in the course of the dwelling series towards South Africa in 2019, Rohit has scored 1462 runs in sixteen Tests at an average of fifty eight.forty eight, with 5 generations like, most not long ago, a Participant-of-the-Match-successful 127 in India’s acquire at The Oval in September.
This isn’t Panchal’s maiden contact-up to the Take a look at squad. Previously this yr he was component of an prolonged India squad that took on England in 4 Tests at dwelling. Panchal, who is 31 and qualified prospects Gujarat in domestic cricket, was amid the reserve openers for that series alongside Abhimanyu Easwaran.
Even though Panchal is a relative unfamiliar to the broader general public, he has been a single of the regulars for India A in excess of the previous several years. A veteran of one hundred very first-course matches, Panchal was most-not long ago component of India A’s shadow tour of South Africa, wherever he captained the team in two of the 3 4-day video games in Bloemfontein. He manufactured scores of 96, 24 and in his 3 innings on tour.
Panchal’s shares rose noticeably considering that his breakout Ranji Trophy season in 2016-seventeen, wherever he topped the operate charts with 1310 runs in seventeen innings at an average of 87.33. His very first-course highest, an unbeaten 314, came towards Punjab that season. Those runs ended up component of a historic operate for Gujarat, who clinched their maiden Ranji Trophy title. Next Parthiv Patel’s retirement previous yr, Panchal took in excess of the Gujarat captaincy.