India's pursuit for a historic 3-1 win in Australia has to overcome a couple of serious injury issues in the side. Fast bowler Ishant Sharma and offie R Ashwin are injured and Rohit Sharma is away after his wife gave birth to their daughter.
However, there is a lot of confusion over R Ashwin and his availability. After Kohli said that the offie has been injured on similar lines in the past two tours, he was included in India's 13-member squad a day before the Sydney Test.
"Well, it's unfortunate that Ashwin has had two niggles quite similar in the last couple of away tours (England and now Australia). He, more than anyone else, will be focused to correct this," Kohli said on the eve of the final Test.
Ishant suffers rib injury
As far as Ishant Sharma is concerned, it has been confirmed that the lanky fast-bowler will miss the Sydney Test as he is facing discomfort in his ribs after the extended spell in Melbourne.
Ishant is experiencing some left rib cage discomfort and the team management did not want to risk him during the fourth Test match in Sydney. As per BCCI, he is undergoing treatment for the same.
As per a report by Cricket Australia, Ashwin, who was not fit enough to take part in the Boxing Day Test match, took part in a solo session in the indoor centre facilities under the supervision of team physiotherapist Patrick Farhart and another support staff member.
"The physio and the trainer have spoken to him in terms of what's required (from him) in order to get over that injury. He is very important for sure. In Test cricket, he is a vital part of this team and we want him to be 100 per cent fit and for a longer period so that he can contribute to us more in the Test format," captain Kohli apprised the media of the situation.
With the Sydney track expected to assist the spinners, the absence of Ashwin from the squad can be a big impediment for India to go ahead and clinch the series.