India worry over Praveen Kumar injury

In what could be an unfortunate blow to Team India's plans ahead of the 2011 World Cup, medium-pacer Praveen Kumar part of the 15-member squad - is learnt to have not yet recovered from his elbow injury and is on his way to the UK for treatment. However, what is even more unlucky is that despite knowing Praveen was carrying an injury ever since his tour of South Africa was cut short midway, the selectors still picked him in the squad of 15 without even a fitness test.

The same old fitness sorry - or more appropriately, the lack of it - seems to have returned to haunt India's planning ahead of the high-profile quadrennial tournament. On Monday, indications were strong that Praveen's participation in the World Cup hangs in serious doubt and the BCCI, selectors and the team management are waiting to see the results of a final diagnosis. Despite several attempts, no official word was coming out from either of them.

Ever since his return from South Africa, Kumar has been recuperating at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore. If he is ruled out, Kerala medium-pacer Sreesanth - who had been in serious contention for the final 15 - will see his chances brightening again. If Praveen's travel to the UK is given an official go ahead (considering that BCCI is yet to confirm), he'll first have to procure a visa for the same which is bound to consume more time.

For the moment though, it is the status of his injury that should ring alarm bells for India. Considering that the entire team is yet to assemble at the NCA and with less than three weeks for the World Cup to begin, a look at the number of players who returned with injuries from South Africa - either midway or after completing the tour - include Virender Sehwag (shoulder), Gautam Gambhir (elbow), and Sreesanth (elbow) while Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra and Munaf Patel have newly returned to full fitness.


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