Big blow for India as Rahul, Jadeja out of second Test, Sarfaraz Khan gets maiden call-up

Sarfaraz Khan. File photo: PTI

Hyderabad: India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and batter KL Rahul were on Monday ruled out of the second Test against England, dealing a body blow to the hosts after a shock loss in the series opener here.

Jadeja sustained a hamstring injury while going for a quick single on Sunday while Rahul complained of pain in his right quadriceps.

Worryingly, Rahul had also injured his right thigh while fielding in the IPL in May last year and that required a surgery, keeping him out of the game for four months.

"Mr Ravindra Jadeja and Mr KL Rahul have been ruled out of the second IDFC First Bank Test against England in Vizag, starting February 02, 2024," the BCCI said in a media release.

"The BCCI Medical Team is monitoring the progress of the duo," it added.

The selection committee has added Mumbai batter Sarfaraz Khan, left-arm spinner Sourabh Kumar and all-rounder Washington Sundar to the squad for the second Test.

It is a maiden national call up for Sarfaraz after scoring truck load of runs in domestic cricket and more recently in the India A series against England Lions.

With Virat Kohli already unavailable for the first two Tests due to personal reasons, the injuries to Jadeja and Rahul have made matters worse for India, who find themselves under pressure after losing only their fourth Test at home since 2013.

Both Rahul and Jadeja had made significant contributions in the first Test before England staged a remarkable comeback to win the game by 28 runs and go 1-0 up in the five-match series. Jadeja snapped up five wickets and made 87 in the first innings while Rahul scored 86.

Jadeja's all-round abilities are invaluable to the team. Off-spinner Sundar, who has shown a lot of promise in his four-Test old career, could replace Jadeja in the playing eleven.

Ever since making his comeback from injury in the Asia Cup in September, Rahul has displayed stellar form in the ODI and Test format. Keeping wickets in the ODI World Cup and more recently in the Test series in South Africa added to his workload.

Though Sarfaraz has got a well-deserved call-up, the chances of Rajat Patidar, who was already part of the 15, making his debut in Vizag are higher.

With Sundar being drafted into the Test, Saransh Jain has been named as his replacement in the India 'A' squad for the third and final multi-day game against England Lions starting on Thursday in Ahmedabad.

"Avesh Khan will continue to travel with his Ranji Trophy team, Madhya Pradesh and will join the Test squad if required," the released added.

India's updated Squad for 2nd Test vs England: Rohit Sharma (C), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shreyas Iyer, KS Bharat (WK), Dhruv Jurel (WK), Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah (VC), Avesh Khan, Rajat Patidar, Sarfaraz Khan, Washington Sundar, Sourabh Kumar.

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