A shoulder injury has ruled Shikhar Dhawan out of the five-match T20I series against New Zealand. He sustained the injury while fielding during the third ODI against Australia in Bangalore. However, BCCI did not announce a replacement yet.
The shoulder injury is the new setback for Dhawan, who earlier missed the West Indies series with a knee injury. Before that, he had to leave the ICC World Cup half-way after getting injured in his finger while batting against Australia.
If not these, there is another one. A delivery from Pat Cummins hit him on the rib in the second ODI in Rajkot. That forced him to stay off the field in the second innings as well. With KL Rahul’s consistent batting and sublime form with the bat, Dhawan has been under pressure to keep his place in the XI.
Shikhar Dhawan last played in recent T20I series, against Sri Lanka where he scored 32 and 52 in the two innings respectively. The half-century came after 15 innings in the format. However, in the recently-concluded ODI series against Australia, Dhawan scored 74 and 96 in the first two games respectively. He couldn’t come to bat in the final ODI.
The first of three ODIs against New Zealand will take place on February 5, and there is no news on Dhawan’s injury if he gets fit by then. There are a few players who can replace Shikhar Dhawan in the India team. They are – Sanju Samson, Mayank Agarwal and Prithvi Shaw.
Samson failed to retain his spot in the T20I squad for the New Zealand tour after Rohit Sharma‘s return. On the other hand, Prithvi Shaw has been going through a purple patch. He recently smashed a quickfire 100-ball 150 against New Zealand XI in a warm-up game. The first T20I will take place on Friday (January 24) in Auckland.
India T20I Squad:
Virat Kohli (C), Rohit Sharma (VC), KL Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant (WK), Ravindra Jadeja, Shivam Dube, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur, Manish Pandey, Washington Sundar, Mohammed Shami.