India's T20 World Cup campaign is facing a huge setback with spearhead Jasprit Bumrah in doubt for the tournament because of a back injury. Bumrah travelled to Bengaluru on Wednesday to undergo fresh scans on his back, and the results are awaited.
Bumrah had missed the Asia Cup in August and September with a back injury but was then picked for the subsequent home T20I series against Australia and South Africa. He played the second and third T20Is against Australia on September 23 and 25, returning figures of 1/23 and 0/50, before missing the first match against South Africa on September 28.
"Jasprit Bumrah complained of back pain during India's practice session on Tuesday," the BCCI said on Twitter after the toss of the first T20I against South Africa. "The BCCI Medical Team assessed him. He is ruled out of the first #INDvSA T20I."
PTI, however, reported on Thursday that the fast bowler was out of contention for the World Cup, quoting a BCCI official who said Bumrah could be out of action for months. "Bumrah is not going to play the World T20 for sure. He has a serious back condition," the BCCI official told PTI. "It's a stress fracture and he could be out for a period of six months."
India have two fast bowlers - Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar - in their reserves for the World Cup. Teams that have already qualified for the Super 12 round of the World Cup - as India have - can make changes to their squad without ICC permission till October 15.
If Bumrah doesn't make the cut, he will be the second major player that India will miss at the World Cup, after allrounder Ravindra Jadeja was ruled out of by a knee injury.