KL Rahul Likely To Miss 5th Test vs England; Hardik Pandya Expected To Lead India vs Ireland – Reports

KL Rahul, the senior opener, is expected to miss the ‘fifth’ Test against England in Birmingham next month due to a groin ailment that pushed him out of the recent T20I series against South Africa.

In other news, Hardik Pandya is expected to head the white-ball team in England, as Rishabh Pant, who is presently captaining the T20 side, would only join the Indian Test squad in the UK after the South Africa series.

Except for Pant, all of the players will leave for England. That includes Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah.

It is understood that the selectors are not considering KL Rahul’s replacement at this time because there is only one Test match, which is a spill-over from the 2021 series.

KL Rahul. (Photo: Twitter)

KL Rahul’s Chances Of Recovering Are Not Looking Bright: Sources

Rahul has not recovered from his groin injury. The Test squad members are assembling in Mumbai today and will fly out at midnight. Rahul is not travelling with the team.

“He will take some more time to recover although he might appear in a fitness test during the weekend. Chances of recovery aren’t looking bright,” a BCCI official privy to the development told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

You have Shubman Gill, who has opened in most of his Test matches. Else, Cheteshwar Pujara can also open the batting, in case there are any fitness issues for any of the two openers. It was a 17-member squad and 16 will be going. So that’s not a problem,” the source added.

Hardik Pandya
PC- Twitter

As far as captain for the T20s against Ireland is concerned, the source said, “While there is Dinesh Karthik, who is the senior-most player in the squad along with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, it was Hardik, who was Pant’s designated deputy and hence favourite to lead.”

Also Read: IND vs IRE: Ireland Announce Squad For The T20I Series Against India, Simi Singh Dropped

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