What Is Going On With Shreyas Iyer & Ishan Kishan? Confusion Reigns In Indian Cricket Amid Several Reports & Claims

What Is Going On With Shreyas Iyer & Ishan Kishan? Confusion Reigns In Indian Cricket Amid Several Reports & Claims

Amid several rumours surrounding the duo, a new report has surfaced which claims that Shreyas Iyer is fully 'fit' with 'no fresh injuries'.

Rohan SenUpdated: Thursday, February 22, 2024, 03:29 PM IST
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The current situation regarding the availability of Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan has left Indian cricket fans confused and critics slamming the board for causing it.

Have Iyer and Kishan been dropped or are they actually injured?

This is the question which almost every fan is asking these days because the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) continues to remain silent in this matter.

What is Shreyas Iyer's Current Fitness Status?

Amid several rumours surrounding the duo, a new report in the Indian Express has surfaced which claims that Iyer is fully 'fit' with 'no fresh injuries'.

This comes after the middle-order batter pulled out of Mumbai's Ranji Trophy quarterfinal against Baroda citing "back pain". Remember that Iyer had surgery on his back last year after missing the entire IPL 2023.

The report quoted the National Cricket Academy's head of sports science and medicine, Nitin Patel, as informing the BCCI selectors about Iyer's injury status in an email.

"Shreyas Iyer was fit and available for selection as per the handover report of the Indian team after the 2nd Test match against England. There are currently no fresh injuries reported as well after his departure from Team India," the report quoted Patel as telling the BCCI in his email.

The Mystery Behind Iyer's Exclusion Amid Jay Shah's Warning

So then why was Shreyas Iyer not named in India's squad for the remaining 3 Tests against England?

The answer to this question lies in the BCCI secretary Jay Shah's warning to the Indian players that the board will take action against them if they don't play in the Ranji Trophy and other major domestic tournaments to regain their form and fitness.

"They have been informed on phone already and I'm going to write letters as well that if your chairman of selectors, your coach and your captain are asking for it then you will have to play red-ball cricket," Shah told the media.

This warning came after India wicketkeeper Ishan Kishan opted out of the Jharkhand Ranji team to train for the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2024) with his new Mumbai Indians captain Hardik Pandya and his elder brother Krunal in Baroda.

Ishan Kishan's Controversial Break from Cricket

Kishan had pulled out of India's Test tour of South Africa in December last year citing "personal reasons" and has not been included in any of the Indian teams since then.

Media reports claimed that the BCCI was not happy with Kishan skipping the Ranji Trophy to go "holidaying in Dubai", when he himself had blamed mental fatigue as the reason behind him taking a break from the sport. Kishan after all, had been on the road with the Indian white-ball teams since making his debut in March 2021 but he's played just 2 Tests during this entire period.

So now 2 players, who were regulars in the Indian teams across formats, are training on their own for IPL 2024 as they are being "punished" by the BCCI for choosing their franchises in the cash-rich league over domestic cricket.

Reports also claimed that the BCCI will make it mandatory for centrally contracted and India A cricketers to play at least 3-4 Ranji Trophy matches in future.

Even India head coach Rahul Dravid had reiterated the board's stance in a press conference that Kishan had to play some cricket before coming back into the scheme of things.

The Impact on Indian Cricket Team Composition

The biggest sufferer in this whole situation has been the Indian team which has constantly been juggling players and handing out debut caps to the likes Sarfaraz Khan and Dhruv Jurel in the absence of Iyer and Kishan.

The injuries to Mohammed Shami, Rishabh Pant, KL Rahul, Ravindra Jadeja, and Virat Kohli pulling out of the entire Test series against England due to the birth of his second child, has left Indian cricket struggling to find worthy replacements.

The Board's Dilemma: Player Management vs. Team Needs

The board therefore, needs to find out a way to iron out the issues with the players or persist with the current squad and give the new additions a longer rope to get settled into their positions. Remember that, Two more Tests remain against England and then the entire focus will shift to T20 cricket with IPL 2024 and the ICC World Cup on the horizon.

The likes of Kohli, Shami, Rahul and Pant will eventually return to the Indian teams and bolster the squads but in the meantime, the board and players like Iyer and Kishan need to clear their heads and prioritise their responsibilities.

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