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Kumar set for indefinite spell out

Indian fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar is set for an indefinite spell out of the game because it is not yet known if he has to have an operation to cure his sports hernia injury.

The 29 year old who missed the tour of the Caribbean with a side injury, but who was recalled for the T20I series against the West Indies after being cleared for play was diagnosed with the problem after the third match of that series.

At this point in time he is waiting to see a doctor to determine if surgery – the standard procedure for a hernia – is the best course of treatment in his case or not.

Kumar has refused to be drawn into the continuing controversy over the role of the NCA (National Cricket Academy), amidst allegations that they had botched his rehabilitation. The NCA had sent him to a private clinic in Bangalore three times for scans during his time with them, without anybody detecting the hernia. Instead he insists that it the responsibility of the BCCI to discuss such matters with the NCA.

The NCA has evolved from an organisation designed to aid the development of young players groomed to play for the national team into one primarily focused on the treatment and return to fitness of international cricketers. Question marks though have been raised about the competency of the specialists it employs, and the efficacy of its treatment methods, with Wriddhiman Saha a case in point. The test wicket-keeper spent more than a year out of cricket after the NCA failed to properly deal with a hand injury he sustained.

Further doubts over the NCA’s role has been raised by the decision of Kumar’s fellow fast bowler, Jasprit Bumrah, to opt for private treatment for the back injury which he sustained earlier this year, choosing to fly to London to consult with specialists as opposed to allowing himself to be treated by the ministrations of the NCA. Hardik Pandya is another international cricketer who has also recently chosen the private route.

Kumar though has refused to point any fingers and has chosen diplomacy instead. With the World Cup T20 some nine months away, he still has time on his side to get fully fit, and, for now, is spending time with his family, and concentrating on his role as an ambassador for a sporting goods manufacturer.

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