Mayank Agarwal web ST

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Ahead of the five-match T20I series against South Africa, KL Rahul suffered a side-strain injury. It resulted in him getting ruled out of the series, and gradually was deemed unavailable for the England series in July. The Tour will witness India playing a one-off Test, 3 ODIs, and many T20Is.

The red-ball match will be the final match of the series played last year, with India leading 2-1, and was rescheduled due to the COVID-19 cases in the Indian camp. The selectors have to take an important decision in announcing the replacement of Rahul for this fixture.

According to the BCCI official, Mayank Agarwal is set to remain on standby, given that only a single red-ball fixture is scheduled to be played in the Tour. The team management is of the opinion that there is no sense in the decision to include Agarwal in the team and then send him home after the culmination of the fixture.

“Mayank will remain on standby. Given it’s a one-off Test, the team management doesn’t see the requirement of adding a player and then sending him home. But if there is an injury, he will be sent to England,” a senior BCCI official told InsideSport.

Agarwal's last competitive game was the Ranji Trophy quarterfinals for Karnataka. He is expected to practice in Bangalore and will only be added to the squad, in case of an injury.

“Mayank will continue to practice in Bangalore. Should the team need him as injury cover, he will be sent to England. For now, he is not travelling with the team. Had we played more than one Test, Mayank would have travelled with the squad,” the official added.

A few days ago, most of the Indian Test squad members reached England. On June 20 (Monday), the likes of Rishabh Pant, Shreyas Iyer, and Rahul Dravid are set to depart for the country after the completion of the South Africa T20I series.

The Indian Test squad will face Leicestershire in a practice match, while the limited-overs team will play 2 T20I matches against Ireland before the England white-ball series.