India captain MS Dhoni could be a doubtful starter for the third and the final One-Day International (ODI) against Pakistan at Ferozshah Kotla on Sunday.
According to a report in the Indian Express the Indian captain suffers a sore back. The probability of him missing the final game of the three-match series was increased when the BCCI announced on their Twitter page that "Dinesh Karthik has been flown in as a back-up to MS Dhoni".
Dhoni made the disclosure of his condition himself during the pre-match conference on Saturday.
"If at all somebody is doubtful, it's me. I have a sore back and we have called Dinesh Karthik as back up.
"Since it was an optional practice session, Yuvraj did not come," the Indian captain said when asked about Yuvraj Singh’s absence from the practice session.
When asked about who will lead the team in his absence, he replied, "Let's hope that I play. We'll see tomorrow."
Battered and bruised by yet another series defeat, India's struggling cricketers will seek to restore some pride when they go into the third and final one-dayer against arch-rivals Pakistan at Delhi on Sunday with the future of some of the under-performing stars at stake.
The collective failure of the top order batsmen even in home conditions has hurt the team badly in recent times and the hosts will need a huge spark of inspiration to prevent the spirited Pakistanis from achieving a 3-0 clean sweep.
(With inputs from PTI)
First Published: January 5, 2013, 4:40 pm