All-rounder Hardik Pandya has been declared fit as he joined the touring Team India ahead of the Boxing Day Test against Australia starting in Melbourne on Wednesday. Pandya could replace Hanuma Vihari at number six in Melbourne but the highly-rated seam-bowling all-rounder has only played one first-class game since September. Pandya, who missed the first and second Tests in Adelaide and Perth respectively, took to Twitter and posted a picture with his India teammates during a practice session and captioned it the 'best selfie ever'.
Best selfie ever pic.twitter.com/dXGpWuV1co— hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) December 23, 2018
The 25-year-old has struggled to consistently perform in the whites during India's overseas tours of South Africa and England earlier this year but might get a place in the playing XI in the third Test.
In September, Pandya had to be carried off the pitch after collapsing holding his back during the Asia Cup fixture against Pakistan.
Having missed the home series against the Windies and the Twenty20 International (T20I) series against Australia, Pandya has had a long rehabilitation period during which he shared every step to his return on social media.
Pandya claimed a five-wicket-haul on his return to the field during the Ranji Trophy match between Mumbai and Baroda.
India have missed their seam-bowling all-rounder in Australia, and went with four specialist pacemen and a part-time spinner Hanuma Vihari on a green track for the second Test in Perth.
Skipper Virat Kohli's decision backfired as Australian spinner Nathan Lyon emerged as the Man of the Match as the hosts won by 146 runs and levelled the four-match series 1-1.