South Africa opening batsman Aiden Markram has been ruled out of the third and final Test against India, starting from October 19 in Ranchi. The 25-year-old has been sidelined by a wrist injury sustained during the second Test in Pune.
“The injury took place following the opener’s dismissal in the second innings of the match. In a moment of frustration with his own performance, he lashed out at a solid object, resulting in his injury,” read a statement from Cricket South Africa.
Markram, who averaged only 11 in the ongoing Test series, felt he was letting his team down.
“It’s sad to be going home on this note and I completely understand what I’ve done wrong and take full accountability for it. It’s unacceptable in a Proteas environment and to let the team down is what hurts me the most,” Markram said.
“I’ve learned a lot from this and the other players I’m sure, have learned from it as well. We understand in sport that emotions run high and sometimes the frustration gets the better of you as it did for me, but like I said, it’s no excuse.
I’ve taken full responsibility for it, I have apologized to the team and hopefully, I can make it up to them and the people of South Africa soon,” he added.
Markram’s unavailability has compounded South Africa’s woes, who have already surrendered the series 2-0 and have also lost their lead spinner Keshav Maharaj to an injury.
The only two reserve batsmen on the bench – Zubyr Hamza and Heinrich Klaasen – are both middle-order batsmen. In Ranchi, vice-captain Temba Bavuma might come up as an opener, where he has batted in just one out of the 38 Tests he’s played thus far – coincidentally in India (at Feroz Shah Kotla in 2015).