The five-match Test series between India and England is now in an exciting phase, with both teams sharing a win each in the first two matches. However, as the contest progresses, India are losing their sharpness with key players failing to feature in the XI. As per the latest update, one of the most reliable batters, KL Rahul has been ruled out of the third Test in Rajkot due to fitness concerns.
The wicketkeeper-batter played the first match in Hyderabad but missed the previous one in Visakhapatnam due to a quadriceps injury. Scans revealed that he had taken a blow to his quads. Although Rahul was included in the squad for the remaining three Tests, the Indian Cricket Board mentioned that his participation would be subject to fitness clearance by the medical team.
While Rahul is yet to be declared fully fit, all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who missed the second Test with a hamstring injury, has been given the green signal to take the field for the crucial match. Injuries and withdrawals have hit the team hard in the ongoing series. The 31-year-old's absence has put an already inexperienced Indian middle-order in huge trouble.
Devdutt Padikal replaces KL Rahul in Rajkot Test
Star batter Virat Kohli pulled out of the entire contest due to personal reasons. Shreyas Iyer got dropped after the right-hander failed to make an impression in the first two Tests. With Rahul also out, there is no experienced campaigner in the middle order. Rajat Patidar made his debut in Rahul's absence in the last match, but now the management has to include another new face to replace Shreyas Iyer.
According to reports, another Karnataka player Devdutt Padikkal has been picked in the squad as a replacement for Rahul. Padikkal has been in blistering form in the domestic circuit. The left-hander has managed 556 runs in just 4 Ranji Trophy matches so far. In his most recent match against Tamil Nadu, the 23-year-old scored 151 runs. He was also impressive in the unofficial Tests against England Lions, hammering a ton.
India's updated squad for the third Test vs England: Rohit Sharma (C), Jasprit Bumrah (VC), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Devdutt Padikkal, Rajat Patidar, Sarfaraz Khan, Dhruv Jurel (WK), KS Bharat (WK), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja*, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Akash Deep