Hardik Pandya, who was injured in the Asia Cup, might not be fit before the second week of November, which could well mean that the selectors might rest him for the Australia series.
Although he might be fit before the first Test, the selectors want to tread with caution considering his workload before the World Cup arrives in 2019.
His workload has been a concern for quite some time now and since he plays in all the three formats, the management would want to give him an extended rest even after he regains his fitness. He could thus miss the Test series and could walk out with the team in the limited overs series.
Has been one of the busiest players
Ever since he has made his Test debut, Pandya has played 11 of the 17 matches including three in South Africa and four in England. Also, he has featured in 35 T20I and two seasons of the IPL and this makes him one of the busiest player from India.
"With Pandya expected to play a crucial role in the next year's World Cup, he might not be considered for Tests for the time being, unless there is a definite need," a source was as quoted by New Indian Express.
The Indian management, especially captain Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri, have been vocal advocates of Hardik Pandya, across all formats in all conditions. However, if the bigger picture is kept in mind, they might well give him rest and keep him fresh and sharp for the World Cup next year.
"Pandya is a really good all-round cricketer. He's confident with his skills with bat and ball. He's sure of what he wants to do," Kohli has said about Pandya.
If the selectors do want to fly a seam-bowling all-rounder to Australia, they could rope in Tamil Nadu all-rounder Vijay Shankar as a possible replacement. On pitches which are true and offer good consistent pace and bounce, Kohli would want an extra option to keep rotating the frontline pacers.