Former cricketer Gautam Gambhir has questioned Shreyas Iyer‘s inclusion in the World Cup squad. Gambhir criticized the NCA and emphasized the importance of having fit players in the squad for the World Cup.
Despite India securing the Asia Cup title in Colombo, the team has been grappling with injury concerns. This casts a shadow over their preparations for the World Cup, which is just a few weeks away. India’s head coach Rahul Dravid and captain Rohit Sharma have sounded the alarm about the impact of injuries so close to such a crucial tournament.
Shreyas Iyer has been out of action since March due to a lower back injury. Subsequently, he missed the entire IPL season following surgery and also missed the WTC final and the West Indies tour. During his recovery period, Iyer spent time at the NCA in Bengaluru. He participated in match simulations and practice games, with the hope of proving his readiness for the World Cup.
However, Iyer’s comeback lasted briefly as he experienced a back spasm after playing just one game in the Asia Cup. The injury sidelined him for the rest of the tournament. Gautam Gambhir, expressing his disappointment, voiced his belief that Shreyas Iyer’s limited performance in the Asia Cup and concerns over his form should lead to his replacement in the World Cup squad.
“It’s a worry. You missed so much time, and then you come back for the Asia Cup, play one game, and then you get sick again. After this, I doubt the team management will choose him for such a significant competition. In a World Cup, fit players should always participate. Performance is something else entirely. Imagine being unable to find a replacement if a player suffers from a spasm or any other condition. Consequently, if Iyer hadn’t been fit during this competition, it would have been nearly impossible for him to take part in the World Cup. Added to that, we don’t even know how he is now performing. Whatever his form looked like, had been 7-8 months prior. He just played one game. It’s unfortunate,” he said.
Furthermore, Gambhir questioned the NCA’s role in Iyer’s recurring back injuries.
“If questions are to be raised, ask the NCA. Shreyas spent all those months before receiving a clearance from it as well. Who knows, perhaps they cleared him too soon? he added.
Rohit Sharma, after India’s victory against Sri Lanka, revealed that certain parameters were set for Iyer, and he was not included in the XI because he had not met them.
“Shreyas wasn’t able to play in this game because there were still requirements for him to meet. I believe he finished the majority of it today. I should remark that right now, he is in good shape. However, he is in good shape and has put in a lot of time in the field, and he was already on the ground when we arrived. We shouldn’t be concerned, in my opinion,” the skipper said.