India's premier fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah has been ruled out of the T20 World Cup with back stress fracture, news agency PTI has reported quoting BCCI sources. On Wednesday, Bumrah was forced to miss the first T20I of the series against South Africa after he "complained of back pain during India's practice session." Bumrah's absence from the T20 World Cup comes as a severe blow to the Indian team, which is already enduring another absence in Ravindra Jadeja.
"Bumrah is not going to play the World T20 for sure. He has a serious back condition. It's a stress fracture and he could be out for a period of six months," a senior BCCI official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
Bumrah was earlier forced to skip the 2022 Asia Cup with a back injury as well. He had made his return to the Indian team in the T20I series against Australia earlier this month, and played in the 2nd and 3rd game of the series.
It is believed that Bumrah's injury is not severe enough to undergo a surgery, but serious enough to keep him out of action for months. Although nothing is official yet, Bumrah is expected to fly down to the NCA on Thursday and the final decision will be taken after evaluating the reports.
The 28-year-old fast bowler was named among a four-man pace bowling attack for the T20 World Cup in Australia, which featured Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh, and Harshal Patel. With Bumrah reportedly being ruled out, India are expected to pick one of Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar to fill his place – both of whom have been named in the standbys for the marquee tournament.
Another name that is doing the rounds is that of Mohammed Siraj, who is currently playing County for Warwickshire
Earlier, the Rohit Sharma-led Team India had faced another severe blow this month when all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja was ruled out of the T20 World Cup with a knee injury. In his absence, however, Axar Patel stepped up with consistent performances in India's recent T20I outings against Australia and South Africa.
Bumrah missing the T20 World Cup comes as a serious blow to the BCCI as well, that have gone to lengths to wrap the Indian pacer in cotton wool. Since India's return to action after the 2022 Indian Premier League, Bumrah has participated in merely three T20Is out of the side's 24 matches so far. Overall, he played in six international matches for the side after the IPL that also included a Test and two ODIs (all against England).
Counted among one of the leading pacers in modern-day cricket, Bumrah has appeared in 60 T20Is for India so far, taking 70 wickets, which makes him the second-highest wicket-taking fast bowler for India in the format.