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Big blow! Star India all-rounder ruled out of T20I series against Australia

The upcoming 20-over series will be a crucial campaign in the lead-up to the 2024 T20 World Cup, which will be hosted by the West Indies and the US in June.

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Mathew K
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Team India (Source: Twitter)

Team India (Source: Twitter)

Team India is just one win away from lifting their third ODI World Cup title. They went into the finals on a 10-match winning streak and will face five-time champions Australia in Ahmedabad on November 19. Meanwhile, right after the mega event, India will host Australia for a five-match T20I series starting November 23. 

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With senior players including captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja likely to be rested after a tremendous World Cup campaign, Hardik Pandya was expected to lead the side. The fast-bowling all-rounder, however, has been ruled out of the series due to an ankle injury sustained during the ongoing World Cup.

Pacer Prasidh Krishna was included in India's World Cup squad after Pandya was ruled out. According to reports, the 30-year-old will miss the upcoming series against Australia, as well as a three-match T20I series and three ODIs against South Africa next month. 

Pandya may need surgery to make a full recovery

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Pandya was out of action since twisting his ankle in the match against Bangladesh in Pune last month. The Gujaat Titans captain tripped over while trying to stop a shot from Litton Das and dragged his right foot after landing on the pitch. He was taken off the field due to discomfort and was later rushed to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) for rehabilitation.

The Indian Cricket Board's medical team is yet to take a call on whether Pandya needs surgery. “Two weeks ago, Pandya was asked to bowl in the nets with strength and conditioning coaches advising him to increase speed slowly. The support staff didn’t want him to put too much pressure on his ankle. It is learnt that Pandya didn’t face any problem in the first three balls he bowled. He decided to increase the intensity of his bowling for the next delivery. It was during the fourth ball that he felt a bit of pain in his leg,” the Indian Express report read. 

The five-match T20I series is a continuation of Australia's tour of India, which began with a three-match ODI series in September. The Men in Blue won the series 2-1 to head into the World Cup as a confident unit. The upcoming 20-over series will be a crucial campaign in the lead-up to the 2024 T20 World Cup, which will be hosted by the West Indies and the US in June.

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