Thursday 6 December 2007 

Shoaib Malik Ruled Out, Asif To Undergo Surgery

Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik has been ruled out of the third and final Test against India, which starts on Saturday in Bangalore, while pace bowler Mohammad Asif will undergo surgery on his troublesome elbow.

Malik, who missed the second Test, which Pakistan rallied to draw in Kolkata, after injuring an ankle playing football, has not recovered sufficiently, meaning Younus Khan will again stand-in as captain.

"Shoaib Malik was sent to a local orthopaedic surgeon for evaluation of his injury. The surgeon has advised another five days of plaster. That means he is out of the third test match," Pakistan media manager Ehsan Malik told reporters on Thursday.

Pakistan have been beset by injury problems throughout the tour with Umar Gul sent home, Mohammad Asif unavailable while Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif were unwell during the previous match.

Asif is to undergo surgery on his elbow injury after an Australian specialist recommended that course of action to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). The surgery will mean he will miss a one-day international series against Zimbabwe in January.

India lead the series 1-0 after a six-wicket win in the opening game in Delhi, although they are themselves struggling with injuries to their bowling attack. Zaheer Khan, Munaf Patel, RP Singh and Sreesanth are all unavailable, with the selectors calling up Irfan Pathan, Vikram Singh and Ishant Sharma as cover.


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