All three cricketers picked up injuries during the recent home series against New Zealand and could be out of action for a while
As for Gill, he was ruled out of India’s Test series in England in the summer after suffering a stress injury to one of his shins. Gill, who played the two Tests against New Zealand at home recently, sat out a few sessions of play in the second Test after first getting hit in the arm and then the finger.
The exact nature of Axar’s problem could not be ascertained, though unconfirmed reports suggest it is a stress-related injury.
Nadeem, who played the last of his two Tests in Chennai against England in February this year, has not been on the selectors’ radar since, while Jayant was the preferred third spinner against New Zealand, and put in a strong performance in the second Test, when he picked up 4 for 49 in the second innings. Nadeem, however, could be in favour since he is a left-arm spinner, like Jadeja and Axar.
Saurabh is the wildcard in the race. The 28-year-old left-arm spinner has never really been close to a national call-up before but has excellent first-class numbers: 194 wickets from 45 matches – mainly for Uttar Pradesh in the Indian domestic circuit – at an average of 23.80. He is also currently on tour in South Africa with India A.
Nagraj Gollapudi is news editor at ESPNcricinfo