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Hardik Pandya

Hardik Pandya out of India 'A' tour, replaced by Vijay Shankar

India news

India all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who has had a long injury lay-off, has withdrawn from the 'A' team's tour of New Zealand on the advice of his trainer S Rajnikanth.

Rajnikanth has said that although Pandya is "100% fit", he still should take it easy before taking on the heavy workload of international matches.

"He is 100% fit. There is no doubt about that. But I don't want him to take the workload of back-to-back international matches. No fitness test has been conducted for Pandya yet, so there's no question of him failing any test," he told Times of India.

Pandya has been replaced with Vijay Shankar for the 'A' team matches and has already joined the team in New Zealand. Shankar has not featured in international cricket since June last year. His addition to the 'A' side also means that he will miss his domestic side Tamil Nadu's games in the Ranji Trophy.

It is likely that Pandya may not feature in the senior side's series in New Zealand either.

"That's not because he's not fit or has failed any test. He's fit, he can score a 20 in yoyo right now. He's doing his 20 meters too, effortlessly. Why I pulled him out is because of his bowling. That is still work in progress - the bowling workload at the international level," said Rajnikanth.

India 'A' are scheduled to play two red ball matches and three one-dayers against New Zealand 'A' from 22 January.

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