The 27-year-old tore a hamstring, which was later diagnosed to be a grade two tear, but batted on with R Ashwin on the final day in Sydney to help his team salvage an improbable draw to keep the scoreline at 1-1 at that time going into the Gabba Test.
He batted in extreme pain and discomfort, facing 161 balls for his unbeaten 23. He was ruled out of the Brisbane Test.
Hanuma, who is currently at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) for rehabilitation, is hoping to regain full fitness for the last two Tests against the Three Lions in Ahmedabad.
Image credit: Hanuma Vihari’s Twitter handle.
“I wish India all the best for the England series. I am sure they will win the series. The Australia win is a big positive for the team going into the series against England. I am not part of the first two Tests, but I am hopeful of getting fit in time and getting into the Indian side for the last two games,” Vihari told TimesofIndia.com.
Though the likes of Ravindra Jadeja and Vihari are missing, India have the services of regular first-choice picks like Virat Kohli and Ishant Sharma for the four Test series vs England.
Former India cricketer Pravin Amre feels the Kohli-led Indian side will definitely have an edge over England in the upcoming series at home. The opening Test of the four-match series will kick off at the MA Chidambaram stadium in Chennai from February 5.
“Indian side is pretty strong. Virat is back, Ishant is there. Pandya is back also. India players are brimming with confidence after defeating Aussies in their own backyard. So, it’s advantage India against England. India are favourites but I would advise them to treat England just like Australia. England have also come to win here. Let’s not forget this.” Amre told TimesofIndia.com.
Joe Root and his team will know just how hard it is to beat India in India. Though England were the last team to beat India in their own conditions in 2012-13, on their last tour in 2016-17 they were convincingly thrashed 4-0 in the 5 Test series.
This time with a berth in the World Test Championship final at Lord’s in June up for grabs, this series assumes an extra layer of significance. With a big win vs the Aussies in foreign conditions at home and with the regular skipper back at the helm of affairs India will be eyeing another commanding performance against an English team which has a lean batting department and two mostly inexperienced spinners in Dom Bess and Jack Leach (24 Tests combined).
“The Australia win will boost India’s confidence. India are favourites because they are playing in their home conditions. India know the conditions better than England. India will have home advantage,” Amre further said.