Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir has said that Shreyas Iyer should be replaced in the Indian World Cup 2023 squad given that he is still not fit enough and doesn’t have any match time under him.
Shreyas Iyer has not played since suffering a lower back stress injury in March of this year. Later, due to surgery, he missed the full IPL season in addition to the WTC final and the tour of the West Indies. After his surgery, Iyer spent his days at Bengaluru’s National Cricket Academy (NCA), where he later participated in match simulations and practice matches to demonstrate his value for the Asia Cup and World Cup.
However, after making just one appearance in the Asia Cup, Iyer was sidelined yet again with a back spasm and since then remained on the bench for the entirety of the tournament.
As a result, Gambhir opined that the India batter should get replaced in the World Cup squad having not performed in the Asia Cup, and India unsure over his form.
“It is a concern. You were out for such a lengthy time and then you return for Asia Cup, play one match and then again become unfit. I don’t think after this team management will pick up him for such a big tournament. You will see in the coming days that Iyer won’t be part of the World Cup squad and someone will be replacing him. You should always go into a World Cup with fit players.
Performance is a different thing. Imagine if a player suffers from a spasm or some other thing then you cannot find a replacement. So if Iyer hasn’t been fit in this tournament then it is very difficult for him to be part of the World Cup because of his injury and then we don’t even know how is form is presently. Whatever his form was, it was 7-8 months back after which he only played in one game. So it is unfortunate,” he said to Star Sports.
Iyer played one innings, against Pakistan and scored 14 runs.
“Who Knows Maybe They Cleared Him Too Quickly?”- Gautam Gambhir Slams NCA
Gambhir further added that the team management should rather question the NCA over Iyer’s repeated back injury.
He said: “If questions are to be raised then ask the NCA because that is where he was all these months and then got a clearance from there as well. Who knows maybe they cleared him too quickly?”
After India won the Asia Cup 2023 final, Iyer was left off the starting XI because, according to Rohit Sharma, he failed to meet certain criteria.
“Shreyas was not available for this game because certain parameters were kept for him to tick off. I think today, he completed most of it. I should say he is alright 99 percent as of now. But he looks good, he batted and fielded for long hours, and he was on the ground long before we came to the ground. I don’t think it is a worry for us,” said the captain.