India vs Australia: Hardik Pandya sidelined due to back injury
Hardik Pandya, who made a stellar comeback to Team India in the tour of New Zealand, has been ruled out of the T20I and One Day International series against Australia. As per a tweet from the Board of Control for Cricket in India, Pandya is suffering from lower back stiffness, forcing him to be sidelined for the series. He will be undergoing strength and conditioning training at the National Cricket Academy from next week.
Pandya’s injury reduces the T20 side to 14 men. As of now, his replacement for the T20 side has not been announced. However, the BCCI revealed that all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja will replace him in the ODI series. Pandya had picked up a similar injury during the Asia Cup, where he injured his lower back and had to be taken off the field on a stretcher. His injury had then forced him to miss out of the series against West Indies and a part of the Australia tour.
When Pandya returned to Team India for the tour of Australia, he along with KL Rahul were embroiled in a controversy over comments that they made on a talk show. The duo was handed a suspension but was allowed to make a comeback. Pandya got back to his playing ways in the third ODI of the New Zealand series. With Pandya being pulled out of the T20s, it is possible that Vijay Shankar might get a better shot at bowling.