Deepak Chahar ruled out with back injury; Washington Sundar named replacement for South Africa ODIs

Washington Sundar wasn't originally part of the squad picked for the three-match series but Deepak's stiff back injury has reopened the doors for him. 
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Deepak Chahar will now head to the NCA for an immediate rehab, also named as one of the reserve fast-bowlers for the T20 World Cup. 

India have recalled Washington Sundar for the remainder of the three-match ODI series against South Africa. The spin allrounder was on Saturday (October 8) named as a replacement for Deepak Chahar, who has been ruled out with a back injury. 

Chahar didn't feature in the opening one-dayer of the series in Lucknow on Thursday (October 6), with the team management prefering the like-for-like Shardul Thakur ahead of him. 

At the time, the decision took many by surprise, before reports emerged that the pacer is down with a back issue. The BCCI has now put its stamp of approval on those reported claims ahead of the second ODI in Ranchi. 

The board confirmed that Chahar "had a stiffness in his back after the third and final T20I against South Africa in Indore" on Tuesday (October 4) and was subsequently ruled out of the ODI series opener. 

Deepak's injury reopens the door for Sundar, who wasn't initially part of the squad. The cricketer is now set to make his return to the ODI side for the first time since February in what has been a injury-marred year for him. 

Washington Sundar returns for remaining South Africa ODIs 

The Tamil Nadu spin allrounder last turned out for India way back in February, when West Indies arrived for three ICC Super League games. Picking up a finger injury, the cricketer was ruled out of the build-up to the T20 World Cup either side of the IPL 2022 for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). 

Upon recovery, Washington Sundar went on a fruitful stint to UK with the prominent English county club Lancashire and was also named for the three-match ODI series in Zimbabwe in August.

But an unfortunate shoulder bump while diving in the field during a first-class game proved fatal for the youngster, who got ruled out of the matches in Harare as well. 

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To rub salt into the players' wounds, he saw Bengal cricketer Shahbaz Ahmed pip him over in the pecking order for backup allrounders for the South African one-dayers in absence of the injured Ravindra Jadeja and T20 World Cup incumbent Axar Patel. 

At his best, Sundar gives India a strong defensive spin option to counter left-handed match-ups in the fifth-bowler's capacity and also a very handy middle-order batting option, something that the interim coach VVS Laxman and stand-in skipper Shikhar Dhawan would look to employ in Ranchi and Delhi. 

Sundar has played four previous ODIs for India with five wickets at an economy rate of 5.00.