Gambhir likely to miss England T20

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Old 29-Aug-2011
Harpreet Seehra
Gambhir likely to miss England T20

Gautam Gambhir, the India opening batsman, could miss the solitary Twenty20 international against England in Manchester on August 31. Gambhir had a light batting session during India's optional training at Grace Road, but informed team management that he was not able to clearly sight the ball on a few occasions.

"He said that he could not see the ball at times when it came at full speed," Shivlal Yadav, Indian team manager, told ESPNcricinfo. "He will be taken to an eye specialist in Manchester on Tuesday." With people making use of the long Bank holiday weekend (Saturday through Monday), Yadav said that private eye specialist who was recommended was on leave and the next available date for an appointment was August 30. "Based on what the specialist says we will have to wait for the next step. As of now it seems difficult," Yadav said about Gambhir's participation in the game.

Gambhir suffered a concussion on the third day of the final Test at The Oval after falling on his back and hitting his head against the turf while attempting a catch in the outfield. He batted down the order in both innings was hit on the back of his helmet by Stuart Broad in the second innings that set his recovery back.

He did not feature in either of India's two victories in the tour games against Sussex and Kent and will likely miss the final practice match, a Twenty20 against Leicestershire on Monday, as well, although his name was printed on the county's programme guide.

On Sunday, the India squad minus MS Dhoni and Munaf Patel enjoyed a three-hour long training session behind closed doors. Dhoni opted out of the session to watch his favourite football team Manchester United trample Arsenal 8-2 at Old Trafford. Reportedly Suresh Raina and RP Singh, who did take part in the training but left early, joined Dhoni for the English Premiership game.

The media were not able to watch the session, however, as they were barred from practice. According to Yadav, the decision was taken at the behest of the local police, who were manning the ground in strong numbers. The team's security has been strengthened after the twin incidents in Kent -an unclaimed package was found on the railway track near Canterbury West train station and the fire inside a Marks & Spencer store that was very close to the Indian team hotel. "The police felt that the media could not be allowed inside the training," Yadav said.

The local ground security even refused to allow the media to watch the training from the few available viewpoints, such as the bar and cafe on the first floor of the block that houses the county shop. When some journalists tried to stand on the bucket seats meant for spectators, they were immediately asked to step down and warned that they would be asked to leave the ground if they continued to ask questions.

Old 29-Aug-2011
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