Under-19 World Cup: India add Vasu Vats as temporary Covid replacement for Manav Parakh

India now have 12 available players for the Uganda fixture, with five more players set to arrive in time for the quarter-finals

Sreshth Shah
Sreshth Shah
India now have 12 players to choose from against Uganda  •  ICC via Getty Images

India now have 12 players to choose from against Uganda  •  ICC via Getty Images

A day after India called up reinforcements in the form of five reserve players to be flown into the Caribbean for the Under-19 World Cup following a Covid-19 outbreak in the camp, the team has made an additional change to the squad: right-arm seamer Vasu Vats has been approved by the event technical committee as a temporary Covid replacement for right-arm fingerspinner Manav Parakh.
The BCCI had originally named Vats in their 17-member squad for the tournament, but ESPNcricinfo understands that the group was divided into 15 main squad members and two travelling reserves. Vats was part of the second category, along with batter Aaradhya Yadav.
Both Vats and Aaradhya were in the group of six that had isolated on Wednesday prior to the game against Ireland. But, while Aaradhya has since tested positive for Covid-19, Vats has returned negative tests. That made him the only available option to be added to the squad before India's final group-stage game, against Uganda on Saturday. That has taken the number of available players for India to 12.
Parakh, as well as designated captain Yash Dhull and vice-captain Shaik Rasheed, and Siddarth Yadav are currently in isolation. But, once he recovers, Parakh will be allowed to return in Vats' place.
In Dhull and Rasheed's absence, India are being captained by allrounder Nishant Sindhu, and under him, India beat Ireland by 174 runs to secure qualification into the Super League quarter-finals. A win against Uganda will see India top Group B, which will then set up a quarter-final game in Antigua and Barbuda against either Bangladesh or UAE.
On Friday, the BCCI had sent five players - Uday Saharan, Abishek Porel, Rishith Reddy, Ansh Gosai and Pushpendra Singh Rathore - as cover to the Caribbean, but they were not going to be available for the Uganda fixture since they have to serve mandatory quarantine after landing in the West Indies. However, they could be used as either temporary or permanent squad replacements if India so need ahead of their quarter-final on January 29.
India are not the only team to be affected by Covid-19 in the competition. Four Zimbabwe players had tested positive before the tournament, and on Friday, the West Indies team, after the ICC's approval, had two players temporarily replaced in the squad after Onaje Amory and Jaden Carmichael tested positive.
India squad for Uganda fixture: Nishant Sindhu (capt), Harnoor Singh, Angkrish Raghuvanshi, Aneeshwar Gautam, Dinesh Bana, Raj Angad Bawa, Kaushal Tambe, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Vicky Ostwal, Ravi Kumar, Garv Sangwan, Vasu Vats.

Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @sreshthx