Mohammed Shami has been ruled out of the Asia Cup T20 after failing to fully recover from a hamstring injury that kept him out of the limited-overs series in Australia last month. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been named as his replacement.
Shami sustained the injury at a training session in Australia, and missed two warm-up games before flying back home. While he was originally said to be out for "four to six" weeks, the medical staff have decided to give him more time to recover from the Grade II injury to his left hamstring.
Despite the lack of match practice, the selectors had indicated their willingness in waiting for Shami to recover, with Sandeep Patil, the chairman of selectors, saying that he hoped to test his match fitness during the Asia Cup. "We have good time for making a call on Shami. He has been one of our best bowlers. He has recovered, he has started bowling. That's what I can say at the moment," Patil had said while picking the squad for the Asia Cup and the World T20.
Before the departure for Australia, India captain MS Dhoni had also insisted Shami was part of his plans for the World T20, which for India begins against New Zealand in Nagpur on March 15.
Shami's last international outing was during the World Cup, when he played through injury and pain, after which he underwent surgery and then rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore. He was then named among the 30 probables for a preparatory camp ahead of the South Africa series in October, but could not regain full fitness for the international matches.
Once fit, Shami played four matches for Bengal - two in the Vijay Hazare Trophy in December and two in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in January.