Bumrah rested for fourth Test against England

KL Rahul is set to miss the fourth Test as well, while his participation in the final Test in Dharamsala is subject to fitness

ESPNcricinfo staff

20-Feb-2024 • 11 hrs ago

Jasprit Bumrah has bowled 80.5 overs in the first three Tests, taking 17 wickets at an average of 13.64  •  BCCI

Jasprit Bumrah has been rested from the fourth Test against England beginning on February 23 in Ranchi. KL Rahul, who missed the second and third Tests, is set to miss the fourth Test as well, while his participation in the final Test in Dharamsala is subject to fitness.

The decision to give Bumrah a break has been made keeping his workload in mind – he’s bowled 80.5 overs in the first three Tests – with an IPL season coming up followed closely by the 2024 T20 World Cup beginning on June 1. There was speculation that Bumrah was going to be rested for the third Test in Rajkot but, with the series level at 1-1, he eventually played the fixture.

Mukesh Kumar, who was released from the squad for the third Test in Rajkot, has joined the squad in Ranchi. He played the Ranji Trophy match for Bengal against Bihar after being released, where he picked up a career-best match haul of 10 for 50 in a massive win for Bengal.

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India now lead the five-match series 2-1 after a record 434-run victory in Rajkot, and they will have to find a way to make up for Bumrah’s absence: he’s the leading wicket-taker in the series with 17 wickets at 13.64 apiece. He was the Player of the Match in India’s win in the second Test in Visakhapatnam, where he took 9 for 91 across both innings.

Mukesh, meanwhile, had played the second Test against England when Mohammed Siraj was rested but bowled only 12 overs in Vishakapatnam for figures of 1 for 70. If India play two fast bowlers in Ranchi, the choice for the second quick will be between Mukesh and the uncapped Akash Deep, who was included in the squad for the last three Tests after topping the wicket charts for India A in the recent first-class games against England Lions.

Rahul had made scores of 86 and 22 during the defeat in the first Test in Hyderabad – the highest aggregate for India in the match – before missing the second Test with a quadriceps injury. He was included in the squad for the third Test subject to fitness, but was eventually ruled out with a sore knee.

The fourth Test between India and England begins this Friday, just four days after the end of the third Test, while there is an eight-day gap between the end of the fourth Test on February 27 and the start of the fifth and final Test on March 7.

India squad for fourth Test: Rohit Sharma (capt), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Rajat Patidar, Sarfaraz Khan, Dhruv Jurel (wk), KS Bharat (wk), Devdutt Padikkal, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Akash Deep

Jasprit BumrahMukesh KumarKL RahulIndiaIndia vs EnglandEngland in India

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