Bad news for India ahead of the first Test against Australia as India opener Prthivi Shaw was ruled out of the first Test after the batsman suffered an ankle injury in the tour match against Cricket Australia XI in Sydney on Friday. The injury has come at crucial time when India had almost decided to play Shaw as the opener in the first Test beginning in Adelaide next Thursday.
With Shaw ruled out, it will be another opportunity for experienced Murali Vijay and KL Rahul to don the hat in the first Test. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) still hasn’t named any replacement for Shaw as yet. “Opening batsman Prithvi Shaw suffered a left ankle injury while attempting a catch at the boundary ropes in the tour game against CA XI at The Sydney Cricket Ground,” BCCI said in a statement on Friday.
“Shaw underwent scans this morning and the reports revealed a lateral ligament injury. Shaw will be unavailable for the first Test against Australia. He will undergo an intensive rehabilitation program to hasten the recovery and be available for selection at the earliest,” the statement further said.
The 19-year-old picked up the injury in the 15th over of the Cricket Australia innings when Aussie batsman Max Bryant hit a six off off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin over mid-wicket and Shaw tried to get to the ball on the ropes. In his effort to catch the ball, he did it but spilled the chance by crossing over the rope. During the process, Shaw suffered the left ankle injury which was later found to be serious.
Writhing in pain, the youngster couldn’t get up and had to stretchered out by a couple of members of the support staff keeping his left ankle off the ground. Shaw had hit a century on Test debut in the home series against the West Indies in October. The opener raised expectations and was almost certain to start the series Down Under as opener.
It’s still not clear whether the injury will push his comeback further as India play four Tests against Australia.