Aggravation of Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s back injury during the third ODI against England has raised questions on the role of Indian team physio Patrick Farhart and trainer Shankar Basu in the handling of the situation.
The UP pacer has been suffering from a stiff back since the start of IPL and also didn’t play all the matches during the limited overs tour of the UK leg.
Bhuvneshwar has currently not been named in the 18-member squad for the first three Tests “as his condition is being assessed by the BCCI medical team”.
However, a senior BCCI official privy to team selection was “surprised” as to why he was played in the third ODI if he wasn’t fully fit.
“Please go and ask Ravi Shastri that question,” the official replied when asked about Bhuvneshwar’s injury management.
“The moment we are saying he has aggravated his injury, we are conceding that he wasn’t fully fit. So if he is a vital cog in our Test match scheme of things, why was he risked for an ODI,” the official questioned while talking to PTI today.
There are questions being raised whether Farhart and Basu had given a proper update about Bhuvneshwar’s fitness.
“If you look at IPL, Bhuvi missed five out of 17 games for Sunrisers. The BCCI had asked the franchise to look after his workload management. Then he was rested for Afghanistan Test so that he gets time to recover for UK tour. But it seems something is amiss and that’s quite baffling” the official said.
Bhuvneshwar had passed the YoYo test which is now a primary fitness criteria to get into the team.
But it has now become clear that he was carrying a niggle since the time of IPL to the time he boarded the flight to the UK.
“There are some questions that the team management needs to answer.
“If despite being given rest during the third T20 and the first two ODIs, he wasn’t hundred percent fit, then why was he allowed to play,” the official, in the know of things questioned.
“Secondly, did Farhart report before the third ODI that playing him would be risking his injury?”
In English conditions, Bhuvneshwar is considered to be an asset as he was very successful during the tour of 2014 when he had shone both with bat and ball.
In 21 Tests, the 28-year-old has taken 63 wickets and scored 552 runs.