Rishabh Pant replaces Shikhar Dhawan in India World Cup squad

Rishabh Pant of the Delhi Capitals bats during the Indian Premier League IPL Qualifier Final match between the Delhi Capitals and the Chennai Super Kings at ACA-VDCA Stadium on May 10, 2019 in Visakhapatnam, India.
Rishabh Pant of the Delhi Capitals bats during the Indian Premier League IPL Qualifier Final match between the Delhi Capitals and the Chennai Super Kings at ACA-VDCA Stadium on May 10, 2019 in Visakhapatnam, India.
Image: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Injured India opener Shikhar Dhawan was Wednesday ruled out of the rest of the World Cup, with wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant approved as a replacement.

The in-form batsman suffered a fractured finger while facing Australia's Pat Cummins in India's second match of the tournament at the Oval on June 9.

Dhawan carried on batting and scored a century to earn the man-of-the-match award as India beat the reigning champions by 36 runs.

But the 33-year-old left-hander did not field and has not featured in the World Cup since his century at Surrey's headquarters in south London.

Pant, a dynamic batsman and wicketkeeper, comes into the India squad ahead of their match against Afghanistan in Southampton on Saturday.

"Shikhar has a fracture at the base of his first metacarpal on his left hand," team manager Sunil Subramanian told reporters.

"Following several specialist opinions, he will remain in a cast until mid-July, which rules him out of the ICC World Cup 2019."

India summoned Pant last week as concerns mounted over Dhawan's fitness and when the opener was ruled out on Wednesday, the World Cup's event technical committee approved Pant's inclusion as a replacement.

"The International Cricket Council has confirmed that the event technical committee of the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2019 has approved Rishabh Pant as a replacement player for Shikhar Dhawan in India's squad for the remainder of the tournament," said a statement issued by the global governing body.

"Opener Dhawan, who suffered a thumb injury during the league match against Australia, has been ruled out of further participation in the event."

India assistant coach Sanjay Bangar explained last week why Pant would be called up if Dhawan could take no further part in the World Cup.

"He bats in the middle order and obviously being a left-hander helps and he was named in the standbys as well, so the team management has gone and picked him," he said.

- AFP

 

 

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