India's head coach Rahul Dravid tests COVID-19 positive: Details here
Team India's head coach Rahul Dravid has tested positive for COVID-19. News agency PTI informed about the development on Tuesday. It is understood that Dravid's availability for the upcoming Asia Cup is yet to be ascertained. He also did not accompany the Indian contingent in Zimbabwe, where the Men in Blue won the ODI series 3-0. Here are further details.
Here is BCCI's official statement
"Team India Head Coach Rahul Dravid has tested positive for COVID-19 in a routine test conducted ahead of the team's departure to the UAE for Asia Cup 2022," said BCCI in a release. "Dravid is under the supervision of the BCCI Medical team and has mild symptoms. He will join the team once he returns with a negative COVID-19 report."
Dravid took charge after T20 World Cup
Dravid took charge of India following the 2021 T20 World Cup. He replaced Ravi Shastri as India's head coach. Dravid was at the helm from the New Zealand Test series at home in November. India then lost the three-match Test series in South Africa despite winning the series opener. The Indians bounced back with a 2-0 series win against Sri Lanka at home.
Will Laxman replace Dravid?
It remains to be seen if VVS Laxman, the incumbent head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA), takes charge of Team India in place of Dravid. The former traveled with India on the Ireland tour and recently toured Zimbabwe with the contingent. One of India's greatest middle-order batters, Laxman, was appointed the NCA head in November 2021. He took over the reins from Dravid.
Indian contingent to leave for Dubai on August 23
The Asia Cup-bound Indian contingent is set to leave for Dubai on August 23. Some of the T20I specialists will join Team India from Harare where India won the ODI series. Meanwhile, India will play their Asia Cup opener against arch-rivals Pakistan on August 28. India, who enter as the defending champions, will then take on a qualifier on August 31.
Jasprit Bumrah to miss the Asia Cup
Indian pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah will miss the Asia Cup due to a back injury. It is understood that Bumrah's back injury would take some time to heal. He will undergo rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru. Similarly, India will miss the services of injured Harshal Patel. Avesh Khan and Arshdeep Singh will accompany Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the pace department.
India's squad for Asia Cup
India's squad for Asia Cup: Rohit Sharma (captain), KL Rahul (vice-captain), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravi Bishnoi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan.