Mumbai: The Indian cricket team survived a scare ahead of the upcoming series against England after cramps forced pace spearhead Zaheer Khan to leave the field without completing his over during his state side Mumbai's Ranji Trophy match against Railways here yesterday.
The national selectors will meet here today to pick the squad for the series.
Zaheer walked out just as he was about to bowl his last delivery of the innings' 99th over. Railways were 333 for six at that point.
It was the first over of Zaheer's fourth spell, and his 12th of the day. He did not return to the field thereafter.
Mumbai skipper Ajit Agarkar said that the senior bowler will turn up today.
"Zak is okay. He is just cramping a bit. He has had a long day and it was very humid here," Agarkar told reporters after the match.
Agarkar said that the veteran started feeling uneasy after tea and added that they didn't want to exert him as two wickets had already fallen in the session.
"He has worked hard enough. In the last month he trained well. He should be on field tomorrow morning. He should be okay. He is just cramping badly. It suddenly got a bit humid, so he's probably dehydrated...after the tea session. That is when, that is when you want to hold back a little bit instead of doing any damage. He should be okay today morning.
"Once you are in (the dressing room) you can't bowl for that period so it didn't really make sense, plus they lost two wickets later on so they were eight down anyway. It's better when you are fresh tomorrow than making it worse today. That is the only reason."
The Mumbai skipper indicated that Zaheer had bowled a fair number of overs. "He bowled well. There is a Test match at the back of his mind. You want to get yourself ready for the Test match and bowl as many overs. I think 20 overs is fair workout under your belt. As a bowler you need some overs going into big games.
"He was obviously trying to get his lines, lengths and rhythm correct before the upcoming Test match. He is in good shape. Over the course of the Test series the conditions will get better, weatherwise at least. This is probably the toughest work out you can have," he said.
Zaheer bagged a wicket yesterday, getting rid of Mahesh Rawat caught behind.
At the end of the day's play, his bowling figures read 20.5-5-41-1.
more in Sports