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Bhuvneshwar and Ashwin available for South Africa clash: Indian team management on injury concerns

Ravichandran Ashwin and Bhuvneshwar Kumar have been declared fit for the South African contest.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ravichandran Ashwin have been declared fit to play against South Africa

Ravichandran Ashwin and Bhuvneshwar Kumar have been declared fit by the Indian team management just ahead of the Pool B match against South Africa at MCG on Sunday.

Reports were making rounds that the bowling duo’s appearance in the “Super Sunday’s” clash was still under question owing to fitness concerns. However, the team management has clearly dismissed such reports, stated that they are “very much available”.

Kumar earlier had to sit out India’s opening match against Pakistan previous Sunday as he failed to clear the fitness test. The uncertainity grew further after a lacklusture training session in Melbourne on Wednesday.

Ashwin, on the other hand was reported to be struck by a Umesh Yadav delivery while batting in the nets.

However, team media manager Dr. Baba cleared the air in an e-mail, Reuters reported.

“We are receiving so many calls from media about R. Ashwin and Bhuvneshwar Kumar fitness, (The) above players are very much available for selection for (the) match against South Africa," Baba wrote in the mail.

With his ability to swing the ball in helpful conditions, the 25-year-old Meerut lad Bhuvneshwar Kumar will be a welcome addition to the Indian contingent that thumped Pakistan down by a 76-run margin in its opener at Adelaide Oval.

Kumar’s ankle injury has been a source of concern for India during the tour of Australia. He has played only one Test and 2 ODIs on the tour so far. In the practice matches, he bowled 5 overs against Australia, but wasn’t used in the attack against Afghanistan.

Ashwin, India’s frontline off-spinner, who showed promising signs against Pakistan with his bowling figures, which included 3 brilliant maidens, is expected to take field against the Proteas too despite the minor blow in the nets.

Both India and the South Africa were seen practising in tandem at the Junction Oval on Wednesday. Both the teams employed contrasting tactics during the training session ahead of the crucial encounter on Sunday, February 22.

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