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Virat Kohli leaves SA due to family emergency; Ruturaj Gaikwad ruled out of series – Reports
By SMCS - Dec 22, 2023 2:00 pm
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Veteran India batter Virat Kohli missed the three-day intra-squad game currently underway in Pretoria whereas Ruturaj Gaikwad has been ruled out of the two-Test series against South Africa. According to sources of Cricbuzz, within the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Gaikwad has not recovered from a finger injury and was released by the Indian team management in South Africa.

Ruturaj gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad scored a century

Kohli, who recently travelled to South Africa for the Test series, returned to India due to a family emergency. While the exact details of the emergency are not clear, BCCI sources say that he will be back in time for the first Test as well which starts at Centurion on December 26. Notably, Kohli left for Mumbai about three days ago after getting permission from the team management and the BCCI to skip the three-day practice game as well.

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Ruturaj Gaikwad, meanwhile, sustained a finger injury during the second ODI against the hosts at Port Elizabeth on December 19. “(He) hasn’t fully recovered from the blow he sustained to his ring finger while fielding in the second ODI. He remains under the supervision of the BCCI Medical Team,” the BCCI shared before the start of the third and final ODI on Thursday.

Team India
Team India

And, checking him now, the team management, after consulting the BCCI, has decided to release him as well. He is expected to reach India by Saturday. Meanwhile, in the practice game, most Indian players had good outings so far. Sarfaraz Khan and Abhimanyu Easwaran made the best use of the opportunity while captain Rohit Sharma, pacer Jasprit Bumrah, Prasidh Krishna and Shardul Thakur looked comfortable too.

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However, after the Boxing Day Test, which will end on December 30, the players will travel to Cape Town, where the second and final Test will begin on January 3.