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Jadeja may miss World Cup due to shoulder injury

Chennai: Ravindra Jadeja may miss out on the upcoming World Cup because of his shoulder injury, according to BCCI sources. It has been learnt that the allrounder, who has been a crucial cog in the wheel in captain MS Dhoni's ODI scheme of things, is likely to be out of action for six to seven weeks due to the injury he picked up while training during the early part of the tour Down Under.

This means Axar Patel has a great chance of making it to the World Cup squad other than the fact that he may feature in his first Test match, the fourth and final Test against Australia in Sydney starting January 6. The same day, the BCCI will also declare the Indian team for the tri-series in Australia and the World Cup. And the lanky left-arm spinner from Nadiad who can bat a fair bit is almost certain to make the grade after Jadeja's fitness issues.

For the last one week, Jadeja has been undergoing rehabilitation at the SRMC Campus in Porur near Chennai under physio Nitin Patel and trainer Rajinikant. But despite the best efforts of the physios, Jadeja is all but ruled out of the tri-series in Australia starting in a couple of weeks' time.

With both the World Cup and the tri-series team being picked on the same day (January 6), as of now, the selectors will have a tricky choice as far as Jadeja's participation in the World Cup is concerned. The mega event begins on February 14 and Jadeja may not attain match fitness by that time.

However, the Indian team management has persisted with Jadeja for the last two years with the World Cup in mind and one understands that the BCCI will wait on his fitness before taking a final decision. If Jadeja's fitness report is negative, the BCCI may ask ICC about the replacement policy for the World Cup hoping that he would be fit before the quadrennial showpiece. If the rules allow it, then he may be named in the World Cup squad, but if he fails to recover in time, Axar is most likely to come in his place in the 15-member squad. As things stand now, with just 42 days to go for the World Cup, Jadeja's chances seem dismal.

If Axar makes it to the World Cup squad, it will be an altogether different high for a career which has seen a remarkably steep incline in a short span. "I never look back and think about what I have achieved. I just keep working on my basics and try to improve every time I take the field," Axar had said just before leaving for Australia.

Just 20, Axar, who was was a bit surprised at the Test call-up, had said: "I know that I have got early success and I have to sustain it for a longer period. I am not someone who is going to sit on my laurels but try to remain grounded and improve every day."

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