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February 18, 1999
Agarkar gets a reprieve
All-rounder Ajit Agarkar, an important cog in India's cricket team, is still unfit and will not not be considered for the second Test of the Asian Test Championship to be played between India and Sri Lanka in Colombo from February 24.
BCCI executive secretary Sharad Diwadkar said that Agarkar had informed the board a couple of days ago that he was yet to be fully recovered from the stress fracture on his landing foot, which he sustained on the eve of the India's tour of New Zealand last December.
However, indications are that the penetrating seam bowler will be included in the 19-member short list for the World Cup.
Vinod Kambli is however yet to intimate the BCCI about his recovery from the twisted ankle he suffered a year ago. Mumbai manager Ashok Mankad recently gave a very negative report on Kambli's fitness.
The deadline for India to provide a pruned list of 19 players for the World Cup is till the end ofthis month, and the selectors are most likely to retain Agarkar who has the record of the fastest 50-wicket haul in one-dayers. The final team of 15 players is to be submitted in March, which means Agarkar has more time to return to full fitness.
But Kambli's World Cup future is being viewed, now, as a non-starter, since reports are that he is not likely to be fully fit even with the help of grace time till March.
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