Star India all-rounder Hardik Pandya is likely to miss the upcoming ODI World Cup 2023 matches against England, Sri Lanka due to injury and will only be available for the last two league games against South Africa and Netherlands.
The 30-year-old Pandya sustained an injury to his left ankle while fielding on his own bowling during India’s match against Bangladesh at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune last week. He missed the New Zealand clash in Dharamshala and is currently undergoing treatment for his injury at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru.
The all-rounder was expected to be fully fit for the England game in Lucknow but assessment has changed now.
According to an Indian Express report, Pandya hasn’t begun to bowl yet and the medical team will wait for a few more days to let him recover at the NCA. He is expected to join the Indian team in Mumbai or Kolkata.
The report added that Indian team management doesn’t want to rush him and are hoping he will be completely fit for the last two games. With the Indian team on a winning streak in this World Cup, the management wants a completely fit Pandya for the semi-final.
Notably, Pandya has been a key part of India’s bowling attack while taking five wickets in their opening three matches of the ongoing World Cup so far. The right-hander batter is also a damaging middle-order batter but has only been called on once so far in the tournament for 11 not out against Australia.
In absence of Hardik, India made two changes in their playing XI against New Zealand, bringing in Mohammed Shami and Suryakumar Yadav. Playing his first match of the ODI World Cup 2023, Shami produced an exceptional performance as he picked up a five-wicket haul and the team is likely to stick with the same combination for the next two matches.
Rohit Sharma led India is the only unbeaten side now and currently leading the points table with five wins in as many games.
They have four more group stage matches to play – that against England in Lucknow on October 29, against Sri Lanka in Mumbai on November 2, against South Africa in Kolkata on November 5, and against the Netherlands in Bengaluru on November 12.