The 2023 Cricket World Cup begins on Thursday at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, with last edition’s finalists — England and New Zealand — going head to head in the opening fixture. Fortunately for New Zealand, skipper Kane Williamson was declared fit to feature in the tournament and was selected in the 15-man roster, although he would not be available for the opener against England. But, there were many players who weren’t lucky enough to regain full fitness in time to be selected in their respective teams for the World Cup.
The likes of Rishabh Pant, Wanindu Hasaranga, Naseem Shah, Anrih Nortje, Tim Southee, etc. would’ve arguably gotten the nod for the showpiece event. But, their fitness came in their way of World Cup selection.
1. Rishabh Pant (India):Since his near-fatal car accident last year, Rishabh Pant hasn’t resumed cricketing action. The wicket-keeper batter is still working hard towards regaining full fitness and marking his return to competitive cricket.
2. Michael Bracewell (New Zealand):The New Zealand all-rounder injured himself in England’s domestic T20 tournament, and was ruled out of the World Cup. He ruptured his right Achilles while playing for Worcestershire will take a while to heal.
3. Naseem Shah (Pakistan):One of the most promising pacers in the world, Naseem Shah was ruled out of the World Cup just days before the tournament was to begin. He injured himself in the Asia Cup Super 4 clash against India and hasn’t recovered since.
4. Ashton Agar (Australia): A calf injury ruled Ashton Agar out of the World Cup for Australia. He sustained the injury before the start of the T20I series against South Africa. He did recover to play against India in the first ODI but injury issues saw him miss out on the next two games.
5. Ebadot Hossain (Bangladesh):An ACL injury saw the Bangladesh star being ruled out of the World Cup. Considering the extent of the injury, Ebadot will be out of action for a long time.
6. Anrich Nortje (South Africa):The express pacer will be a big miss for South Africa in the World Cup, especially because of his Indian Premier League experience. After he sustained a lower back injury, Lizard Williams replaced him in the squad.
7. Wanindu Hasaranga (Sri Lanka):A superstar for the Sri Lankan team, primarily with the ball, Hasaranga couldn’t participate in the ODI World Cup due to a hamstring injury he sustained during the Lankan Premier League. He didn’t feature in the Asia Cup 2023 for Sri Lanka.
8. Axar Patel (India):Once a part of India’s 15-man squad for the World Cup, Axar injured himself during the Asia Cup 2023 and hasn’t recovered since. He was replaced by Ravichandran Ashwin in India’s roster.
9. Sisanda Magala (South Africa):The South African speedster continued to have a problem with his right knee and was replaced by Andile Phehlukwayo in South Africa’s 15-member squad for World Cup 2023.
10. Dushmantha Chameera (Sri Lanka): Dushmantha Chameera sustained a pectoral muscle injury while playing in the Lanka Premier League in August. He hasn’t featured for the islanders since.
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