190617 Kumar
India's Bhuvneshwar Kumar, right, bends in pain after bowling. Image Credit: AP

Manchester: Another valuable India player will be out of action for the foreseeable future at the Cricket World Cup. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been ruled out of India’s next two to three matches due to hamstring injury. Star opener Shikhar Dhawan is also under observation following his injury to his hand.

Kumar’s injury happened during the victory over Pakistan at Old Trafford on Sunday when he was forced to leave the field having bowled just 2.4 overs. He suffered tightness in his left hamstring.

India captain Virat Kohli has confirmed Kumar’s injury and said that he got injured when he stretched his hamstring off a foot mark during a follow through. He also revealed that he would not be available for selection for the matches against Afghanistan on June 22 and West Indies on June 27 and possibly the crucial match against England on June 30.

Talking to broadcasters after the victory over Pakistan, Kohli said: “He has a slight niggle. It was because of slipping on the foot marks. It doesn’t look too serious at the moment. We are going to give it some time. Hopefully he will be ready in a couple of games, if not max by three games from now.”

Following India’s win over Pakistan, India have a total of seven points and are in the third spot in the points table. Although they have won all their match, their match against New Zealand got rained off and they had to share the points.

India coach Ravi Shastri, in an interview to Gulf News, said: “Injuries to top players are my biggest worry. As a team we have covered all the basics and have all the ingredients to win matches.”

Kumar will now be replaced by another pacer Mohammad Shami. “Kumar himself feels that the niggle is not too bad. Just time will heal it. He is going to be a very important factor for us so he hopefully he can recover well in time. We have got Shami ready and raring to go so we are not too worried about where the situation stands,” said Kohli

To add to India’s comfort, Vijay Shankar who completed Kumar’s over gave India their first breakthrough by trapping Pakistan opener Imam-ul-Haq leg before with first delivery and went on to bowl brilliantly in the match.