India vs Australia 2017: Shikhar Dhawan released from ODI squad for first three games
Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan has been released from the squad for the first three ODIs against Australia, set to begin on September 17, after requesting a leave to attend to his ailing wife.
Dhawan had earlier missed the fifth ODI and one-off T20I against Sri Lanka owing to the poor health of his mother, and had flown to India after the conclusion of fourth ODI.
The BCCI has decided not to name a replacement for the left-hander, who made a comeback to the national side in the Champions Trophy in June. He ended as the highest run-getter in the tournament, right after having a fruitful IPL with the Sunrisers Hyderabad. In the Champions Trophy held in England, he scored a century against the Lankans at the Oval, and also scored an unbeaten 132 against the same opponents in the first ODI of the recently concluded series.
Carrying on the rich vein of form from the tournament in England, Dhawan was also the highest run-getter in the Test series that preceded the 50-over games in Sri Lanka.
In his absence, KL Rahul or Ajinkya Rahane are likely to be the designated openers along with Rohit Sharma. Rahane was in extremely fine nick in the ODI series against West Indies, finishing as the highest run-getter from either side, with 332 runs from five games at an average of 67.20.
Dhawan’s wife, Ayesha Mukherjee, is an amateur boxer based in Melbourne. They married in 2012, and in 2014, the couple had a boy together, named Zoravar. Harbhajan Singh had introduced Ayesh to Shikhar Dhawan on Facebook.
Recently, former Australian captain Michael Clarke had singled out Dhawan, along with Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, as the players the visiting Australia side need to be vary of.
After the conclusion of their game against the Board President's XI, the Australian side will begin the ODI series with the first game at the Chepauk Stadium, set to be held on September 17. The other matches are scheduled to be held on 21st, 24th, 28th September and 1st October, at Kolkata, Indore, Bengaluru and Nagpur respectively.