Chennai: An injury to Praveen Kumar has left an empty slot for another seam bowler in India's Test squad for their tour of Australia. ESPNcricinfo looks at the prospects of the three bowlers who are most likely to figure in the selectors' discussions, to be held on Monday.
It has been over three years since Irfan Pathan played a Test for India, and two since he slipped off the international scene. Lack of pace and penetration were two of the reasons he was dropped, and other seamers took his place. His performances in this Ranji Trophy season, however, have revived his chances of playing for India. He is currently the leading wicket-taker in the Elite division, with 21 wickets in four matches for Baroda, including five-wicket hauls in three consecutive matches.
The selectors could be looking to replace Praveen with a bowler of similar pace and swing to compliment the faster Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron. Irfan's abilities as a batsman also give him the edge, though his bowling form alone may be enough to merit selection. According to Sanath Kumar, the Baroda coach, Irfan seems to have got his bite back, and it shows in his body language.