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Cricket news - Bhuvneshwar Kumar under another injury cloud

It has been an injury-filled year for Bhuvneshwar Kumar

It has been an injury-filled year for Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is a doubtful starter for the forthcoming ODI series against West Indies after seemingly sustaining another injury. The 29-year-old was a notable absentee in Friday's (December 13) training session at the MA Chidambaram Stadium two days out from the series opener with bowling coach Bharat Arun stating that the swing bowler was being assessed.

"The physios are taking a call. They would give a press release later in the evening after the assessments," Arun said, without revealing the nature of the injury.

If the medical assessment confirms India's fears and Bhuvneshwar is ruled out of the series, it'll mark the latest chapter in Bhuvneshwar's injury-riddled last 15 months since he was ruled out of the Test series in England with a back injury that first flared up during IPL 2018. Since his man-of-the-match winning performance in the Johannesburg Test of 2018, Bhuvneshwar has been consigned to intermittent spells in India's white-ball elevens either side of the 2019 World Cup.

He featured in the white-ball legs of India's tours of Australia and New Zealand and admitted that he was still trying to rediscover his bowling rhythms. He began India's World Cup campaign but suffered a hamstring injury during the group stage clash against Pakistan only to return later in the tournament. A side strain picked up in West Indies in August forced him into another period of rehabilitation at the NCA, ruling him out of the T20Is against Australia, South Africa and Bangladesh.

He played all three T20Is against West Indies upon return to fitness, claiming 2 for 41 in the Mumbai decider after two wicketless games in Hyderabad and Trivandrum. India already have Shikhar Dhawan missing from the originally named squad for the three one-dayers in Chennai, Vizag and Cuttack after the opener injured his knee at the domestic Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 competition. Should Bhuvneshwar join the ruled-out list, the likes of Shardul Thakur, Khaleel Ahmed could come in as replacement.

Bhuvneshwar's injury timeline [Since early 2018]

IPL 2018 - Missed five games out of 17 - two against Mumbai Indians, Kings XI Punjab, Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore - because of back troubles.

India's tour of Ireland 2018 - Rested for the second T20I to manage workload.

India's tour of England 2018 - Misses the third T20I and first two ODIs because of back troubles. Returned home midway through the five-Test series.

West Indies in India Tests 2018 - Rested to manage workload. Rested for the opening two ODIs of the five-match series as well.

India in Australia Tests 2018-19 - Though part of the squad, Bhuvneshwar revealed he wasn't 100 per cent fit.

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 - Missed three games - against Afghanistan, West Indies and England - because of a hamstring issue.

India in West Indies Tests 2019 - Wasn't picked for the two-Test series

South Africa in India 2019 - Missed the three-match T20I series and three Tests with a side strain.

Bangladesh in India 2019 - Missed the three T20Is with injury. Wasn't part of the Test side but joined the side in Indore and Kolkata to prepare for the T20I series against West Indies.

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