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Sri Lanka vs India: Wriddhiman Saha and Murali Vijay ruled out of 3rd Test, Naman Ojha and Karun Nair called up

26.64K   //    23 Aug 2015, 20:31 IST
India will go into the 3rd Test without either of their premier openers – Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan

Opening batsman Murali Vijay and wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha have both been ruled out of the 3rd Test against Sri Lanka which is to start from August 28 at the SSC, Colombo. Karun Nair and Naman Ojha have been called up as replacements.

Both Vijay and Saha are playing in the 2nd Test, and both showed considerable discomfort with hamstring strains on Day 4. Vijay did not run much in his innings of 82, and Saha had to go off once while batting. KL Rahul kept wickets for the 21 overs Sri Lanka were put in to bat.

The ongoing 2nd Test has one day of play remaining, with India in a favourable position to win – 8 Lankan wickets are required on the final day, with the hosts chasing the unlikely target of 341. The highest successful fourth-innings run chase at the venue is 352-9 by the hosts against South Africa in 2006.

Ojha and Nair called up

Vijay has had recurrent problems with his right hamstring in recent times, while Saha’s lower right hamstring has cut short only his second series as India’s specialist keeper.

Karun Nair’s inspired performance for India ‘A’ earned his team a draw against South Africa ‘A’ on Friday, and the Karnataka batsman has had a stellar domestic season. Neither Nair and Ojha have played a Test match for India yet, though Ojha was handed an ODI debut back in 2010.

It remains to be seen whether the two are pushed into the XI for the 3rd Test like Stuart Binny was, or whether they have been called up only as cover. India have now lost the sevices of their two premier openers – Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan.

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