Ashwin to miss the 5th Test; India’s premier off-spinner is all in likeliness to miss the fifth Test due to injury.
Having lost the last Test at Southampton by 60 runs, India’s plan of winning a series outside of Asia also received a hit as the hosts gained unassailable 3-1 lead in the series. As per a report in Times Now, a news which is likely to further cause damage to the team’s preparation for the dead rubber is that of Ravichandran Ashwin getting injured and possibly in line to not be part of the playing eleven for the last Test at The Oval.
Ashwin was doubtful even before the last Test as he was facing a niggle. In a bid to not cause further load on his body, the team management looks all set to rest him for the next match.
If that happens, Ravindra Jadeja, who is in the team as the second spinner, will be the front-runner for the spot vacated by the 31-year off-spinner. Having yet to play a match in the series, Jadeja would be looking to make a mark in the series. Moreover, his inclusion will be a boost for captain Virat Kohli who had stated in the post-match presentation that India will enter The Oval will full intensity.
The change will also be a welcome opportunity for Jadeja who has represented India in a sole Test (no ODIs or T20Is either) this year. In the 36 Test matches that he has played at the highest level, he has picked up 171 wickets at an average of 23.11, an economy rate of 2.32 and a strike rate of 59.5.
Among the other changes which India would be considering to make to the playing eleven includes the conundrum regarding the opening spot. With Prithvi Shaw included in the squad ahead of the fourth Test, an out-of-sorts Lokesh Rahul might face the axe in the last match.