Gambhir declared fit for Edgbaston Test

Gautam Gambhir missed the Trent Bridge Test due to an elbow injury AFP

London: Aug 2, 2011

Gautam Gambhir, who missed the second Test against England due to swollen elbow, was declared fully fit on Monday for the third Test match.

Gambhir s opening partner, Virender Sehwag, is expected join the team on Wednesday and will play the two-day game against Northamptonshire to check his fitness ahead of the third Test beginning at Birmingham on August 10.

The Indian team, trailing the four-match series 0-2 and battling with injuries to key players, got a boost with Gambhir being declared fit for the game. Gambhir sat out of the second Test because of an elbow injury.

“Gambhir has recovered from the injury. He is sure for the next Test,” Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said.

India crashed to a humiliating 319-run defeat with a day to spare in the second Test at Trent Bridge on Monday to give England a 2-0 lead in the series. They also lost the first Test at Lord’s by 196 runs.

Now India will have to win at least one of the remaining two Tests to prevent England from snatching away their number one Test ranking.

Sehwag, who has scored 7,694 runs in 87 Tests at an average of 53.43 with 22 three-figure knocks including two triple centuries, would get just one warm-up game to acclimatise to the conditions here.

In the absence of Sehwag and at times Gautam Gambhir, India tried three different opening combinations.

The pair of Murali Vijay and Abhinav Mukund opened the innings in the three-match Test series in the West Indies that India won 1-0. Vijay, however, failed to make a mark in the Caribbean, scoring just 72 runs in three Tests.

However, Mukund, who had made his debut in that series, impressed with 147 runs.

As a result, he opened with Gambhir in the first Test against England at Lord’s, but after the Delhi opener was declared unfit to play in the second Test, Mukund faced the new ball in Rahul Dravid’s company.

But so far nothing has clicked with England’s bowlers having completely dominated their batsmen.

Apart from Dravid and VVS Laxman, most of the Indian batsmen have struggled to find their form.