In what is yet another injury blow to Team India, middle-order batsman and one of the heroes of the historic draw in Sydney, Hanuma Vihari has been ruled out of the fourth and final Test which is scheduled to start in three days time at the Gabba in Brisbane due to a hamstring tear.
Hanuma Vihari, on Monday, showed immense valor and bravely as he battled through extreme pain, literally batting on one leg for his 161-ball 23* and along with Ravichandran Ashwin, blunted out more than 42 overs to help India salvage an epic draw in the third Test.
Post his heroic knock, Vihari was immediately taken to the hospital for scans and while the reports for the same are expected in due course, a BCCI official has confirmed to PTI that the Andhra batsman is set to be sidelined for a considerable period of time and he is likely to not only miss the fourth Test at the Gabba but also the four-Test series against England on home soil.
In the absence of Hanuma Vihari, Team India may either look to include Mayank Agarwal or play Wriddhiman Saha as specialist keeper and Rishabh Pant as a specialist batsman.
The official also revealed that the team-management gave Hanuma Vihari and Rishabh Pant several pain-killers so that they could carry on batting.
“The extent of Vihari’s tear can only be ascertained after the scan reports come through. But even if it’s a grade 1 tear, he is out for at least four weeks and then will need some rehabilitation time. So it’s not only Brisbane Test but also, he won’t be a part of England Tests at home,” a senior source told PTI.
Meanwhile, Shardul Thakur is also in line for his Test debut in place of injured all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja. With Shardul boasting of a lot of FC experience and ability to bat as compared to rookie T Natarajan, he is looking like a prime candidate to replace Jadeja on what is expected to be a bouncy Gabba track.