Shreyas Iyer ruled out of first Australia Test
The middle-order batter is expected to join the India squad for the second Test in Delhi
Shreyas Iyer has been ruled out of the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia starting February 9 in Nagpur.
ESPNcricinfo has learned that Iyer, who returned to Bengaluru on Wednesday to get fitness clearance from the National Cricket Academy (NCA), was told he needs to spend more time in rehab to recover from the back injury that had ruled him out of the recent ODIs against New Zealand.
After playing the two-Test series in Bangladesh in December, Iyer had a swelling in his lower back for which he was given an injection at the NCA. He was originally expected to travel from Bengaluru to Nagpur and join the India squad for their preparatory camp for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy starting on February 2.
Extending Iyer's rehab is more of a precautionary step taken by the BCCI medical staff and he is now expected to join the India squad for the second Test, which starts in Delhi from February 17.
Iyer was one of the contenders for a middle-order batter's slot along with Shubman Gill and KL Rahul, depending on who opens with Rohit Sharma. He's played only seven Tests so far, averaging 56.72 at a healthy strike rate of 65. Iyer began his Test career with scores of 105 and 65 on debut against New Zealand in Kanpur in November 2021, and he was India's second highest run-scorer - 202 in three innings - in their most recent Test series in Bangladesh in December last year.
India's squad for the first Test against Australia: Rohit Sharma (capt), KL Rahul (vc), Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli, KS Bharat (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat, Suryakumar Yadav
Nagraj Gollapudi is news editor at ESPNcricinfo