Rahul doubtful for WTC final, likely to miss remainder of IPL
KL Rahul, who limped off the ground, during Lucknow Super Giants' defeat against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday is expected to miss the remainder of the Indian Premier League.
While exact details on the nature of his injury is yet to be shared by the franchise or the BCCI, it is understood that the opener will fly to Mumbai to undergo scans and then will head to the National Cricket Academy for rehabilitation.
As things stand, Rahul's participation in the World Test Championship final – where he was being prepped to play as a wicket-keeper – is also in serious doubt. A clear picture on his availability is expected only after he undergoes tests in Mumbai, but according to those in the know, Rahul will at least need a month's time to fully recover.
With the WTC final against Australia slated for June 7, and the team set to depart on May 29, the 31-year-old is racing against time to be fit for the showpiece event.
While the selectors have already announced a 15-member squad for the WTC final, changes to it seem inevitable with another round of meeting expected in the coming days.
Apart from Rahul, his teammate at Lucknow, Jaydev Unadkat has also suffered an injury in his left-shoulder in a net session on Sunday. The bowler is understood to have had a nasty fall after his foot got tangled in one of the ropes that was tied to the practice nets.
It is reliably learnt that the left-arm pacer would need 6-7 weeks time to recover, which again makes him doubtful for the final.
The injury to Rahul would be a big concern for the team management who were banking on him to bat in the middle-order. Though he was dropped from the XI for the last two Tests against Australia owing to poor run of form, with Shubman Gill taking his spot at the top, injuries to Shreyas Iyer had made an opening for Rahul in the middle-order.
Although the selectors have recalled the experienced Ajinkya Rahane for the WTC final, India will now have to seek reinforcement in the middle-order. With the middle-order being on shaky grounds and KS Bharat not looking comfortable with the bat, India were planning to handover the wicket-keeping gloves to Rahul, which would have strengthened the batting and allowed them to bat deep till No 9.