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KL Rahul Out; Dravid Opens up about Shreyas Iyer’s Selection in Asia Cup

India head coach Rahul Dravid has given an update on Shreyas Iyer’s fitness ahead of the Asia Cup 2023. Dravid said that Iyer was fully recovered and fit to play in the tournament. He also said that KL Rahul would not be available for the group-stage matches of the Asia Cup due to an injury. Iyer’s comeback would be a big advantage for India in the Asia Cup and the World Cup.

Dravid spoke to the media on Tuesday, after wrapping up the training camp in Alur, Karnataka. He said “Shreyas Iyer has done well in all the tests – he has batted and fielded a lot in the camp. The only thing he needs is more match practice. He looked in good form, and we want to give him more chances to play, hopefully in the Asia Cup. He has been in shape, batted well, and fulfilled all the requirements.”

Though both Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul have been sidelined from cricket since April 2023, Iyer’s absence has been longer than Rahul’s. He suffered a lower back injury during the Border-Gavaskar series, and had to miss the IPL 2023 season, the WTC final and the tour of West Indies. He underwent surgery and rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy.

Dravid confirmed that Rahul would not be able to play in the matches against Pakistan and qualifier Nepal in Sri Lanka, which are scheduled to take place on September 2 and 4 respectively at the Pallekele International Stadium. When asked about Iyer’s status for the tournament, Dravid said, ‘Iyer is expected to resume his role as India’s No.4 batsman.’

As the Iyer is confirmed for No.4 slot, the team management will have to decide whether they will use Ishan Kishan as the wicketkeeper in place of Rahul, who was the backup option, or they will opt for Sanju Samson, who was picked as a travelling reserve.

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