Rib-cage injury puts Ishant out of IPL

Veteran pacer Ishant Sharma has been ruled out of the Indian Premier League after sustaining a rib-cage injury, his team, Delhi Capitals, said.

Ishant is the second Delhi Capitals player to be ruled out after leg-spinner Amit Mishra, whose campaign ended due to a ring finger fracture, sustained during one of the earlier matches.

The 32-year-old Test specialist featured in only one of the seven games Delhi Capitals played so far, finishing his four overs wicketless for 26 runs, against Sunrisers Hyderabad in Abu Dhabi.

“Fast bowler Ishant Sharma experienced an acute episode of left rib cage pain while bowling at a team training session on October 7, 2020 in Dubai,” read a Delhi Capitals statement.

“Subsequent investigations revealed that he sustained a left internal oblique muscle tear. This injury will unfortunately rule him out of the remainder of the IPL.”

Ishant played 97 Tests, 80 ODIs and 14 T20Is for India. But his participation in the Test series in Australia later this year will now depend on how his rehabilitation programme goes.

While Delhi Capitals is all set to seek a replacement with two senior bowlers ruled out of the remainder of the IPL, Ishant’s absence wouldn’t hurt them as much as Mishra’s, simply because of the wrist spinner’s role on the bigger UAE grounds.

Delhi Capitals had tried all their pacers and Harshal Patel seemed to have fit the bill as far as head coach Ricky Ponting is concerned.

In case Delhi Capitals replace Ishant with a pacer, they have Pradeep Sangwan among net bowlers who can directly integrate with the team.

Delhi Capitals could also look for a second Indian wicketkeeper in case Rishabh Pant’s hamstring injury break takes more than a week.

With Shimron Hetmyer being dropped at the expense of a wicketkeeper in Alex Carey, Delhi Capitals can check with Rajasthan Royals if they have any plans to release one of their keepers, Anuj Rawat, as a part of mid-season transfer.

The Royals already have three keepers playing in their eleven — Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson and Robin Uthappa.

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