The Indian cricket team suffered a major blow after senior off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has reportedly tested for COVID-19 and has not travelled to the United Kingdom along with his teammates for the rescheduled ‘fifth Test’ against England starting on July 1. (More Cricket News)
According to sources, Ashwin is currently in quarantine and will only join the squad after meeting all protocols requirements. The Indian team had left for United Kingdom on June 16.
“Ashwin hasn't travelled with the squad to UK as he has tested positive for Covid 19 before departure. But we are hopeful that he will recover well in time before the Test match starts on July 1,” a BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
“However, he might miss the practice game against Leicestershire,” the source added. The rest of the squad is already in Leicester and started training under the supervision of bowling coach Paras Mhambrey and batting coach Vikram Rathour.
Rahul Dravid, Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer have reached London after finishing the T20 assignment against South Africa and will travel to Leicester on Tuesday. The Ireland-bound squad under VVS Laxman will leave for Dublin on either June 23 or 24 as the team members have been given a three-day rest.
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Meanwhile, Indian cricketers, including skipper Rohit Sharma and opener Shubman Gill, on Monday hit the nets at the Leicestershire County Ground. India will be based in Leicestershire for a week and play Leicestershire in a four-day warm-up match from June 24.
With KL Rahul missing due to an injury, it is highly likely that Shubman Gill will open the innings along with Rohit. The India captain, who was rested for the South Africa T20s at home, defended few deliveries on the front foot, while also playing the pull shots against the short balls.
Indian players such as Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravindra Jadeja, who were not part of the South Africa series, had their first training session in England last week. It will also be the first time, Rohit will be leading India in Tests outside India. ]