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Bumrah, Ashwin fit; Kohli in race to get fully fit for third Test

LONDON: The beleaguered Indian team on Tuesday received a boost with pacer Jasprit Bumrah being declared fit and available for selection for the third Test against England starting in Nottingham on Saturday.
England lead the five-match series 2-0 after convincing wins. Bumrah had injured his left hand whilst playing in the first game of the long tour against Ireland in Dublin back in June.
He didn’t feature in the T20Is or ODIs against England since then, and also missed the first two Tests thanks to a fracture on his left thumb.
He underwent surgery in Leeds on July 4 and underwent rehabilitation back in India, before being called up for the Test series. Throughout the second leg of this tour, Bumrah has been keenly working in the nets, from Chelmsford, to Birmingham, to Lords, although the team management was waiting for the plaster to come off finally.
During one of the net sessions while the rain intervened during the second Test, Bumrah was seen bowling without his plaster and thus his availability for the next match has now been confirmed.
Even so, it remains to be seen whether he will be included in the playing eleven without having any proper match time. In other good news, both Ravichandran Ashwin and Hardik Pandya have also been declared fit. Both suffered blows to their bowling hands while batting in the second innings at Lord’s.
Ashwin was hit twice, in fact. Meanwhile, skipper Virat Kohli is in a race against time to get completely fit for the third Test. He had confirmed his availability albeit with the rider that he might not be able to field or run between the wickets up to a 100 percent of his ability.
There was a gym session for the entire Indian team today, with the players as well as the skipper taking part. Kohli is also undergoing rehabilitation to improve his chances of attaining total fitness, even as these various issues put a spotlight on the heightened workload of Indian cricketers. (PTI)

Never give up on us, says Kohli

LONDON: Embattled India captain Virat Kohli called on the fans to back his team following consecutive losses to England in the ongoing Test series, hoping that they “never give up” on the side.
“Sometimes we win and other times we learn. You never give up on us and we promise to never give up on you either. Onwards and upwards,” read a message on Virat Kohli’s official facebook page.
The brief post was accompanied by a picture of the Indian team in an on-field huddle. The Indian team lost the opening two Tests of the ongoing five-match series by heavy margins with the much-vaunted batting being a major let-down. Kohli, after a hundred in the first Test, also experienced a dip in form. (PTI)

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