IND vs AUS: Jadeja set to join, Iyer still doubtful

Jadeja made a strong comeback with a 7 wicket haul for Saurashtra in the second innings against TN as he bowled 41.1 overs in the Ranji Trophy match.

  • Sinchan Saha | February 1, 2023 | 11:33 am

Ravindra Jadeja is set to join the Indian Test team ahead of the first Border-Gavaskar Trophy Test against Australia, which begins on February 9 in Nagpur. Jadeja returned to competitive cricket last week in Saurashtra’s Ranji Trophy match against Tamil Nadu.

Image Source: Times Now

Jadeja, who has been sidelined for nearly six months due to an injury, was included in the Indian team for the first two Tests against Australia, but his inclusion was contingent on his fitness.

“Ravindra Jadeja’s inclusion in the squad is subject to fitness,”

BCCI had said in a media release earlier this month.

Jadeja, now fit, made a strong comeback against Tamil Nadu with a seven-wicket haul in the second innings. He bowled 41.1 overs in the match and scored 15 and 25 runs to dispel any doubts about his fitness.

According to a report in ESPNCricinfo, one of the BCCI physios traveled with Jadeja during the Ranji Trophy match to monitor his fitness.

In order to finish his final round of fitness tests, Jadeja is back at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru.

Jadeja’s final Test match was the rescheduled fifth Test in July of last year against England

After experiencing pain in his right knee during the Asia Cup, Jadeja had knee surgery in August and has been out of action for six months.

He was in the Bangladesh tour Test squad in December, but he was later ruled out due to inability to demonstrate his fitness.

He was unable to play in the home white-ball series against Sri Lanka and New Zealand because of an extension of his rehabilitation. However, after receiving permission from the NCA, he participated in the Ranji Trophy match to assess his fitness for the crucial Border-Gavaskar Trophy match and to get some game time before facing Australia, who have not won in India since 2004.

However, Shreyas Iyer has yet to receive his fitness clearance because he is still recovering at the NCA from his stiff back. Due to this issue, he was disqualified from the ODI series against New Zealand and will have to spend some time at the NCA. He recently received an injection to reduce his lower back swelling.

Shreyas will undoubtedly be the middle-order batsman of choice if he is cleared. In the five Tests he played last year, he averaged over 60 and scored 422 runs and four fifties.

Suryakumar Yadav, India’s T20I batting superstar who has yet to play in a Test, is one of the other contenders. In the event that India opens with skipper Rohit and KL Rahul, Shubman Gill could also play in the middle order.

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The BCCI wants to ensure that Iyer is completely healed before he travels to Nagpur and participates in India’s preparatory camp, which begins on February 2. Iyer is optimistic about his quick recovery and is on track to be declared fully fit.