India suffered a major setback ahead of the first test against New Zealand at home when batter KL Rahul was ruled out due to a thigh injury.

Virat Kohli, India’s captain, has decided to skip the first of the two tests, and batter Rohit Sharma, wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant, and fast bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami have been rested for the whole of the series.

The Indian cricket board (BCCI) announced on Tuesday that opener KL Rahul has a muscular injury in his left thigh.

The BCCI said, “He will now undergo rehabilitation at the NCA (National Cricket Academy) in preparation for the series against South Africa scheduled for next month.”

As for Rahul’s replacement, the selectors added batsman Suryakumar Yadav, who has played white-ball cricket for India but has yet to play a test match replacement.

KL Rahul has played in 40 tests and made 2321 runs at an average of 35.16. In 2016, he scored his best score of 199 against England in Chennai.

India Test squad:

Ajinkya Rahane (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara (vice-captain), Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), KS Bharat (wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Axar Patel, Jayant Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Md. Siraj, Prasidh Krishna

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