Karnataka captain Mayank Agarwal, who was recently hospitalised after drinking a suspicious liquid on-board a flight, has recovered and will return to lead his team against Tamil Nadu in its next Ranji Trophy Group C match in Chennai from Friday. The 32-year-old batter had consumed the liquid on board his team’s flight to Surat after the match against Tripura last month. He had to be admitted to a hospital to treat the burning sensation in his mouth and throat. Agarwal went on to file an FIR alleging foul play. He consequently missed Karnataka’s last engagement against Railways.
However, he was cleared of any major health issue by the doctors here, paving the way for his comeback to the team.
Promising batter Nikin Jose had led Karnataka against Railways in the absence of Agarwal and the former champions eked out a nervy one-wicket win at Surat with veteran Manish Pandey making an unbeaten fifty.
Currently, Tamil Nadu lead Group C with 21 points, same as Karnataka. But TN are leading the chart because of their better net run rate 2.06.
Agarwal’s return will boost their batting as the Karnataka opener so far has scored 310 runs from four matches at an average of 44 with two hundreds and a fifty.
Karnataka have also received further boost in batting as the in-form Devdutt Padikkal too will be available for this match.
From three matches, the left-hander has amassed 369 runs at an average of 92.25 with two hundreds.
Padikkal missed the last match because the 23-year-old was part of the India A squad that faced England Lions at Ahmedabad.
Opener Dega Nischal and Abhishek Shetty moved aside for Agarwal and Padikkal.
Karnataka squad against TN: Mayank Agarwal (captain), Nikin Jose (vice-captain), Devdutt Padikkal, Samarth R, Manish Pandey, Sharath Srinivas (wk), Aneesh KV, Vyshak Vijaykumar, Vasuki Koushik, Shashikumar K, Sujay Sateri (wk), Vidwath Kaverappa, Venkatesh M, Kishan S Bedare, Rohit Kumar AC, Hardik Raj. Coach: PV Shashikanth.
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