Harbhajan Singh, the North Zone captain, has been ruled out of the Duleep Trophy semi-final against Central Zone due to viral fever. In his absence, vice-captain Gautam Gambhir will lead the side in the match, to be played in Mohali from Wednesday.
Harbhajan, who has been sidelined by the national selectors for over 18 months now, was upset with the timing of the ailment. "It is disappointing," Harbhajan told ESPNcricinfo. "I have been on antibiotic medication and will be fit in a couple of days."
Harbhajan had led North Zone's campaign last year when they shared the trophy with South Zone after the final in Kochi was virtually washed out.
North Zone chief selector Vikram Rathour said there would be no replacement named for Harbhajan.