India have named left-arm seamer T. Natarajan as the replacement for injured paceman Umesh Yadav ahead of the last two cricket tests against Australia

India's Umesh Yadav, left, celebrates the wicket of New Zealand's Martin Guptill with teammates during the second day of the first Test at Green Park Stadium in Kanpur on 23 September 2016.

Yadav limped off during India’s eight-wicket victory in the second test in Melbourne and is the injury setback for the tourists, who are also without experienced seam duo Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami.

The 29-year-old Natarajan was initially picked as a net bowler for India’s tour Down Under after his strong showing in the Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament.

Shardul Thakur, who made his test debut against the West Indies in 2018, replaced Shami in India’s squad ahead of the Boxing Day test and is likely to get the nod for the third test in Sydney starting on January 7.

In some welcome news for India, opening batsman Rohit Sharma, who travelled to Australia last month after rehabilitation from injury, completed his quarantine and joined the team in Melbourne.

– Reuters

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