Indian first-choice opener Mayank Aggarwal has been ruled out of the inaugural Trent Bridge face-off referring to concussion, as the right-handed batsman was hit on the head by Mohammad Siraj’s spooky bouncer in the nets just one day advance of the launch of five-match test series.
Aggarwal snagged the blow while commencing the day’s batting session and trying out a drill to duck the bullet-speed bouncers. As per bystanders, Mayank totally lost sight of the ball at that moment and ball with electrified speed struck hard on the helmet that created nano-second blackout for Aggarwal. Witnessing the intensity of the blow, teammates including Siraj and support staff rushed for help. Team India’s physio Nitin Patel took Aggarwal for some scans, and in the frames Mayank was seen rubbing a portion of his back head while walking-off.
Agarwal made it into the possible playing-XI ahead of the inaugural test, as the regular opener Shubhman Gill was sanctioned to fly-back home and heal with a shin injury. Abhimanyu Eeaswaran, India’s reserved player, is now the only bet available now to adjoin Rohit Sharma to equal the opening pair. Although KL Rahul, who carries experience of opening the innings on 33 occasions is available to be promoted up in the order but team explores him as a middle-order batter. To stamp team’s trust, KL Rahul scored 101 runs in three-day warm-up match in Durham while batting at no.05.
Hanuma Vihari and Cheteshwar Pujara are also experimented as stop-gaps openers in the past, but these types of scouts are not expected in the upcoming series. Ajinkya Rahane, who has recently received the clearance to appear in the inaugural test match ruled-out the possibility of making any changes to Pujara’s no. 03 spot.
"Who'll open our innings we are again finalising our combination, it's not yet finalised. Pujara has been really solid for us as No. 3 batsman and he'll continue to bat at No. 3. Rahane revealed team India’s batting order in a recent chat ahead of the opening test.
"As [far as] opening bat [goes], the captain, coach and management will decide the combination and you'll get to know soon."
The selectors have recently added Prithvi Shaw and Suryakumar Yadav, as a replacement for injured players. The players have directly taken the flight from Sri Lanka where they were key members of the Indian white-ball tour. However, both players are expected to get a clearance to adjoin team and carry-on their jobs only after the second test due to strict quarantine protocols in place in the U.K.
"I had a small niggle but I'm fully fit now," he said. "Whatever the physios and trainers asked me to, I've completed all those things. I'm looking forward to the Test match. I'm completely prepared.
"The preparation has been really good so far for me. Even though I didn't play the three-day game, I was practising on the sidelines. Again, here in Nottingham, we have had a couple of good practice sessions so I'm completely ready." Rahane added this note before signing-off the pre-match conference for team India.