| Yuvraj Singh in Nagpur on Wednesday |
Nagpur: Not wanting to carry passengers, the Sri Lanka team management has sent Muttiah Muralidharan and Dilhara Fernando home.
Whatever his form, Muralis presence makes a difference. As for the injury-prone Fernando, its not beyond him to actually spring a surprise or two.
That Murali could be returning to Sri Lanka was, in fact, reported in these columns on Wednesday.
While Murali had been carrying an injury for almost a fortnight (he hurt his right middle and ring fingers during the final Test), Fernando suffered a fracture in the region of his right palm during the first ODI, in Rajkot, on Tuesday.
As the going hasnt at all been good, the team management sent an SOS for three players, instead of just two.
Muthumudalige Pushpakumara, Muralis replacement, has arrived. As also Suraj Randiv, the additional off-spinner. Dilharas replacement, Suranga Lakmal, is expected soon, manager Brendon Kuruppu told The Telegraph at the team hotel, Pride, here.
That an extra spinner has come suggests that the team management doesnt have much faith in Ajantha Mendis.
Lasith Malinga, who missed the opening ODI on account of flu, is expected to recover in time for the second match Ś a day-night affair, in neighbouring Jamtha, on Friday.
Meanwhile, it couldnt be confirmed, but the buzz late on Wednesday was that senior pro Yuvraj Singh was somewhat under the weather. There was even talk of viral fever.
Yuvraj has already missed the first ODI, owing to the hairline fracture on his left little finger. He got injured during last Saturdays T20 International in Mohali.
Should the viral fever bit be true, then its highly unlikely that Yuvraj would be fit for Friday.