Dhawan to replace injured Vijay vs Lanka

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Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay

Calcutta/Mumbai: Shikhar Dhawan replaced opener Murali Vijay on Monday in the 16-member Indian squad, for the Test series against Sri Lanka. Vijay was ruled out due to a wrist injury.

The Test series starts on July 26.

“The all-India senior selection committee on Monday named Shikhar Dhawan as the replacement for injured Murali Vijay in the Test team, which is scheduled to travel to Sri Lanka for a three-match Test series,” Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Amitabh Choudhary said in a release.

“Vijay, who had suffered a wrist injury during Australia’s tour of India, has complained of pain in his right wrist, while playing a preparatory match. The BCCI medical team has therefore advised that Vijay should continue his rehabilitation program.”

Dhawan, who is a regular in the Indian ODI side, has played 23 Tests with an average of 38.52. He last played a Test for India in 2016 against New Zealand in a home series.

After the Test series, India are scheduled to play five one-dayers starting August 20 before signing off with a lone Twenty20 on September 6.

Vijay had missed only one Test — against Australia in Bangalore — out of India’s long home season of 13 and later revealed he had been playing with a fractured wrist.

He was subsequently ruled out of the IPL and flew to the UK for surgery. Vijay had also picked up an injury on the left shoulder during the final Test against England in Chennai, making him sit on the sidelines for a month.

Meanwhile, off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has welcomed Zimbabwe’s ODI series victory over hosts Sri Lanka and said such shock results will help cricket stay healthy.

“With regard to Zimbabwe winning over Sri Lanka, that’s how the game goes… Anybody can lose, anybody can win. Tomorrow Afghanistan may beat someone, so that’s the way the sport needs to (go)… It is very healthy for the game,” Ashwin said on the sidelines of a promotional in Mumbai.

Zimbabwe defeated Sri Lanka 3-2 in the five match ODI series by wining the first, fourth and the fifth games.

The 30-year-old cricketer was reluctant to comment on the appointment of new head coach Ravi Shastri .

“I think, the new coach or the new support staff, it does not come under my jurisdiction, it is not something I will take a call on.

“I am not being diplomatic, it will be unfair for me to pass a comment on that. Likewise always, the Indian team moves on, India moves on (and) we have to find out in course of time, how it is going,” said Ashwin.