<
>

India name Devika Vaidya as replacement for injured Vastrakar

Devika Vaidya prepares to catch the ball during warm-up Annesha Ghosh

Batting allrounder Devika Vaidya, who bowls legspin, has been named as replacement for the injured quick-bowling allrounder Pooja Vastrakar in India's World T20 squad. Earlier, Vastrakar was ruled out of the tournament due to a knee injury sustained during India's warm-up game on November 4 against West Indies.

Twenty-one-year-old Vaidya, who has nine ODIs and one T20I appearance to her name, last played for India during the three-match ODI series at home against England earlier this year. She was part of the playing XI in the first two unofficial ODIs of three-match series against Australia A in Mumbai last month where the hosts were blanked 0-3. Vaidya had scored only 1 and 0 in those games and went wicketless in the three overs she bowled across the two matches.

Vastrakar, 19, had been eyeing a comeback to international cricket, having earlier pipped fellow pace-bowling allrounder Shikha Pandey in India's three-personnel pace contingent that was originally named for World T20. An ankle injury had sidelined Vastrakar during the Women's Challenger Trophy in August, following which she was left out of the squad for the Sri Lanka tour in September.

The ICC event technical committee comprising Geoff Allardice, Chris Tetley, Mel Jones, Ebony Rainford-Brent, Jennifer Nero and Roland Holder approved of Vaidya as her replacement. Vaidya is expected to join the squad in time for the semi-finals which will be played on November 22 in Antigua.

India are slated to play their last league game, against Australia, on Saturday in Guyana. With both teams having already qualified for the knockouts by not losing a match so far, the result will decide the table-toppers in Group B who will play the second-placed team from Group A - one out of West Indies and England.