Kaarthick joins team as injury scare for Viru, Gambhir

Hopes returns home; Pacer Clint McKay to join Australian team

Gambhir, who was fielding at short-leg at the Kotla on Saturday, was hit on the back of his neck when he tried to evade a Ricky Ponting pull. Though he didn’t take the field for the remainder of Australian innings, the left-hander came out to bat at number three. There is, however, a question mark over his availability for Monday’s day-nighter. Later during India’s chase, Sehwag was hit on his left ankle off a Peter Siddle yorker that had the right-hander writhing in pain before he was dismissed in the next over.

With both the Delhi batsmen being doubtful starters, the Board of Control for Cricket in India has flown in Kaarthick as a cover. Kaarthick, who was in Delhi for Tamil Nadu’s All-India National T20 tournament, flew out to Mohali on Sunday.

“Dinesh Karathick will be joining the Indian team in Mohali,” N Srinivasan, the BCCI secretary, said in a statement. “Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir sustained injuries during the third match and a final decision on their availability for the fourth match at Mohali will be taken on the morning of the game,” said the release.

Meanwhile, Australia suffered yet another blow when James Hopes was ruled out of the rest of the seven-match series after the all-rounder failed to recover from the hamstring injury he picked up during the first match in Vadodara.

Along with fast bowler Breet Lee and wicketkeeper-opener Tim Paine, Hopes became the third Australian on this tour to be sent back home due to injury.

Cricket Australia's National Selection Panel has named Victorian paceman Clinton McKay, who played in the Champions League, as a replacement for Lee while New South Wales all-rounder Moises Henriques, who made his ODI debut in Delhi, will now remain with the squad for the remainder of the series. “James has done everything he can with medical staff to try and make himself available for the remaining games. However, due to the compressed nature of this tour and his speed of recovery so far we feel now we have insufficient time to have James fully fit to take part in the remaining games of this series,” said Australian physio Kevin Sims.

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