AR Hemant

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Somewhat of a contrarion.

Praveen out, but who is in?

It’s official now. Praveen Kumar won’t play the 2011 World Cup. The swing bowler has failed to recover from the elbow injury he’d suffered in South Africa.

He is expected to be replaced by Sreesanth, but more details are awaited. Sreesanth has undergone a fitness test at the National Cricket Academy.

Praveen had been recuperating at Bangalore’s NCA and had also been sent to England for treatment. But the injury turned out to be more serious than thought earlier.

The World Cup tournament rules allow the BCCI to request for a substitution. This request is referred to the event technical committee which includes Ratnakar Shetty, Anil Kumble, Sanjay Manjrekar, David Lloyd, etc and is headed by ICC’s general manager Dave Richardson.

Sreesanth was brilliant in patches in the Tests against South Africa. He had also taken seven wickets in two ODIs against New Zealand. In recent outings, he’s shown a higher degree of control.

Then, there’s Ishant Sharma who’d been a disappointment in the pace-friendly wickets of South Africa, managing just seven wickets at 48.14. He hasn’t played an ODI since the ODI series in Dambulla in August.

India’s World Cup squad has been plagued with injuries. Their three top batsmen, Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir are all nursing injuries that are expected to heal before the Cup begins on Feb 19.

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