WTC Final: 3 possible replacements for injured KL Rahul
KL Rahul is all but out of the remainder of the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) due to a hamstring injury he sustained while fielding against Royal Challengers Bangalore on May 1. His participation in the high-voltage ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final against Australia in June is all but over. Here we look at three players who can replace him in India's squad.
Sarfaraz Khan has been stellar in FC cricket
Sarfaraz Khan has been banging the selection doors with his stellar performances in red-ball cricket. His average and strike rate after 37 First-Class games read 79.65 and 70.21, respectively. The dasher slammed 556 runs at 92.66 in the 2022-23 Ranji Trophy. Hence, the selectors have some solid reasons to hand him a maiden call-up. His inexperience in English conditions, however, can go against him.
Ruturaj Gaikwad can tackle the red cherry well
Ruturaj Gaikwad has been one of the most prolific run-scorers in India's domestic circuit in recent years. The right-handed top-order batter has a rock-solid technique that would help him tackle the swinging ball precisely. He averages 42.19 after 28 First-Class games. Notably, in IPL, he has troubled several world-class bowlers. He has been among the runs in the ongoing season as well.
Ishan Kishan can boost the lower order
Ishan Kishan seems the best bet to fill the injured Rishabh Pant's shoes in the Indian Test team. The wicketkeeper-batter can play some impactful knocks down the order at a good pace. Notably, he was selected for the home Test series against Australia earlier this year, though he did not make his debut. Rahul's injury might propel Kishan back to the Test side.
A look at Rahul's Test numbers
Rahul made his India debut in the 2014-15 Border-Gavsakar Trophy Down Under. He has since amassed 2,642 runs across 47 matches at an average of 33.44. He has slammed seven tons and 13 half-centuries (HS: 199 vs England). In Rahul's absence, the in-form Shubman Gill is certain to open India's innings alongside skipper Rohit Sharma in the WTC final.
Oval to host the WTC 2021-23 final
The International Cricket Council (ICC) earlier confirmed that the 2021-23 WTC final will take place at the Oval, London, from June 7-11. The venue will also play host to the 2023-25 final in June 2025. The venue has previously hosted the finals of the 2004 and the 2017 editions of the ICC Men's Champions Trophy.Share this timeline