India A vs New Zealand A: Rishabh Pant struck down by fever; Parthiv Patel called up as replacement
What's the story?
Rising Indian sensation Rishabh Pant is unlikely to feature in the second unofficial Test between India A and New Zealand A after succumbing to a bout of fever. Parthiv Patel has been called up in his place.
Pant scored a scintillating 41-ball 67 in the first Test, a game that India won, and while he missed the four-day games against South Africa A earlier this year, has been a regular fixture in the India A limited-overs sides.
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Pant has been suffering from the illness for a few days. According to the BCCI, while the illness isn't too serious, he has been advised to rest, which means it would be Parthiv who would don the keeping gloves for India A.
The heart of the matter
The BCCI have stated that the decision to call Parthiv up to the squad is a precautionary one considering India A do not have a back-up keeper in the 15-member squad. However, even if Pant is fit and raring to go, Parthiv could still find a place in the team considering his sensational performances in the domestic circuit. He captained his side Gujarat to the Ranji title earlier this year, following which he became the 48th Indian to amass 10000 first-class runs.
The decision to call him up to the squad could also imply that the Indian team consider Parthiv as second-choice to Wriddhiman Saha in Tests and will, in all likelihood, turn to him for the South Africa tour in January.
Parthiv last featured for the India A side way back in 2008.
Meanwhile, coming to the series in question, the second Test, which is set to be played with the pink ball, will begin on Saturday. However, the match will be played during the day due to the absence of floodlights at the venue.
India A are set to take on New Zealand A in the second unofficial Test starting September 30. While the hosts comfortably took the first game, the visitors will be looking to hit back strongly the second time around and level the series.
At the moment, it looks unlikely that Pant will feature. Parthiv is more than equipped to perform the job and Pant should be given some much-needed rest, even if fit, considering the limited-overs series that lies ahead.