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India's fast bowling woes ahead of Australia Tests

Last updated on: February 8, 2013 18:08 IST

Who will replace Zaheer and Umesh for Aus Tests?

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Harish Kotian

The Indian selectors will face a huge dilemma when they sit down on Sunday to select the Indian squad for the Test series against Australia, starting later this month.

With all the frontline fast bowers unavailable due to injuries, the selectors will be wondering whom to pick for the four-match series.

The leading trio of Zaheer Khan, Umesh Yadav and Irfan Pathan are all struggling with injuries, while Ishant Sharma is also experiencing some pain in his ankle but is likely to lead the pace attack in the absence of the seniors.




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Sreesanth needs to come up with a good performance

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S Sreesanth has the experience of 27 Test matches behind but he is also making a comeback from injury.

He needs to come up with a good performance and a bagful of wickets in the ongoing Irani Trophy match to convince the selectors to recall him.


Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images
Tags: Sreesanth

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Bhuvneshwar Kumar could win his maiden call up to the Tests

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Bhuvneshwar Kumar's good showing in the limited over series against Pakistan and England recently will definitely make him the favourite to land his maiden call up to the Test squad.

The selectors will also be keenly following the performances of MP pacer Ishwar Pandey in the Irani Trophy match.

The tall fast bowler finished as the highest wicket-taker in this year's Ranji Trophy with 48 wickets in eight games and will be fancying his chances.


Photographs: BCCI

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Zaheer Khan is a doubtful starter

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Zaheer Khan is a doubtful starter for the series after failing to recover from his calf injury sustained while playing for Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy.

The injury also forced to miss the Ranji Trophy final and the ongoing Irani Trophy match.

He is currently recovering at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore and is likely to miss at least the first part of the series.


Photographs: Mark Dadswell/Getty Images

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Umesh Yadav likely to miss entire series

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Pace sensation Umesh Yadav, who dished out a few impressive performances last year, is likely to miss the entire series after failing to recover from his back injury he sustained during the first Test against England in Ahmedabad in November last year.

It is the recurrence of the lower back stress fracture which he also suffered during the second edition of the Indian Premier League in 2009 which was played in South Africa.

He is currently undergoing physiotherapy at the NCA.


Photographs: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

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Ishant Sharma's fitness under scanner

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Ishant Sharma was expected to lead the Indian attack in the absence of Zaheer and Yadav but even his fitness has come under a bit of question mark.

The lanky pacer is experiencing some pain in his ankle and will be travelling to Australia to consult a specialist.

His injury is not believed to be serious and he could well start the first Test match in Chennai on February 22.


Photographs: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

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Irfan Pathan is out due to knee injury

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Irfan Pathan was in the middle of a good season with both bat and ball in domestic cricket before a knee injury put paid to his efforts last year.

He is also currently rehabilitating at the NCA and is unlikely to play the Australia Tests.


Photographs: Duif du Toit/Gallo Images/Getty Images

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Varun Aaron has been struggling to recover from injury

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Jharkhand fast bowler Varun Aaron promised a lot when he burst on the international stage.

His ability to bowl at express pace marked him out from the rest of the lot but injuries have been his big bane for the last couple of years.

He last played for India in December 2011 and since then has been struggling to recover from a back injury.

The latest on the pacer is that he will be travelling to London to consult a specialist to take a decision on when he can start bowling.

"I have been bowling on and off but haven't bowled flat out. After this consultation I will get a clear picture of my body. Sitting at home has been frustrating but it's a stress fracture and it takes longer to mend and you can't do anything about it," Aaron told the Indian Express newspaper recently.


Photographs: Getty Images

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Shami Ahmed looks unlikely to make the Tests

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Bengal pacer Shami Ahmed was benched for the Irani Trophy match and looks unlikely to make the Test team.

He impressed with his pace and ability to move the ball in the limited over series against England but will have to wait for his chances.


Photographs: BCCI

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