Injuries are taking a toll on the Indian team on their England tour.
After Shubman Gill, Washington Sundar and Avesh Khan were ruled out, Shardul Thakur joined the list of casualties.
Shardul Thakur was India’s fourth seamer in the first Test in Nottingham and picked up four wickets in total in the match.
Captain Virat Kohli confirmed during his press conference on Wednesday that Thakur has a hamstring injury on his left leg.
This could pave way for Ravichandran Ashwin to make a comeback into the playing XI after being left out because of Ravindra Jadeja’s superior batting skills.
The other option for India is to go with a pace bowler – Umesh Yadav or Ishant Sharma.
However, the danger with this approach is that it leaves the team with a long tail.
Broad out of second Test
England fast bowler Stuart Broad was ruled out of the five-match Test series against India with a calf injury.
“England seamer Stuart Broad has sustained a tear to his right calf and has been ruled out of the Test series against India,” said an official statement.
This is heart-breaking for Broad as the second test would have marked his 150th appearance in the format.
Broad has taken 524 Test wickets which make him England’s second-most successful Test bowler behind his new-ball partner Anderson, whose 621 are an all-time record for any fast bowler at this level.
The uncapped Saqib Mahmood has been called up as a replacement for Broad.
Mahmood, who has played seven one-day internationals and nine Twenty20s, will compete with Ollie Robinson, Mark Wood, Craig Overton and all-rounder Sam Curran for a place in England’s pace attack.
As per latest reports, even the 39-year-old Jimmy Anderson is struggling with a thigh problem sustained on Wednesday.
The last time England played a Test without either Anderson or Broad was in October 2016.
There could be changes in the batting front too.
Nottinghamshire batsman Haseeb Hameed and Ollie Pope could make their way into the team as both Dom Sibley and Zak Crawley have been struggling.
Crawley, in particular, is likely to be axed from the XI after averaging just 11+ in the last 7 Tests.
Moeen Ali back
All-rounder Moeen Ali was added to the squad ahead of the second Test that starts at Lord’s on August 12.
England’s batting deficiencies were brutally exposed in the first Test and apart from skipper Joe Root, no batter stood out.
The absence of all-rounders like Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes has hurt the team’s balance and Moeen’s inclusion is meant to redress that.
The 34-year-old off spinner has been in fine form in the white-ball format.
Moeen hit a 23-ball half-century for Birmingham Phoenix on Monday night and has captained the side to the top of the table.
His last Test was in February against India in the second Test.
Moeen made 49 runs and claimed eight wickets in that Test which England lost.
However he didn’t feature any further the red-ball series as he returned back to England owing to the side’s rotation policy.