Kanpur: Senior India fast bowler Ishant Sharma has been ruled out of the first Test against New Zealand starting 22 September as he is recovering from chikungunya, a disease that has been prevalent in the National Capital Region (NCR).
India's chief coach Anil Kumble intimated the mediapersons on Tuesday.
"Ishant Sharma is recovering from chikungunya and will not be available for the first Test match. We have not asked for any replacement and will choose our first XI from the available 14," Kumble told mediapersons after the training session.
Chikungunya fever has affected a lot of people in Delhi and adjoining areas with state's health department issuing alerts for citizens.
Ishant, India's most experienced of India's four pacer with 209 wickets from 72 Tests, is a resident of West Delhi's Patel Nagar area.
If India happen to go in with two pacers, then the likely choices will be Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
The Black Caps camp has not been free from fitness worries either, with pacer Tim Southee getting ruled out of the Test series due to an ankle injury. Matt Henry has been named his replacement for the five-day fixtures.
All-rounder Jimmy Neesham, who is looking to make his first international appearance since November last year, has been ruled out of the first game at Kanpur due to a rib injury. No immediate replacement has been named for him.
India and New Zealand play three Tests and five One-Day Internationals, with the Tests scheduled to take place in Kanpur, Kolkata and Indore respectively. The Kanpur Test will be India's 500th, with Indian cricket legends such as Sachin Tendulkar, Dilip Vengsarkar and Mohammad Azharuddin set to attend the match.
Updated Date: Sep 20, 2016 18:14 PM