Injured Saha eyeing comeback by mid or end of December

Wriddhiman Saha

Kolkata: Out of action for most part of the year due to injury, India wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha on Sunday said he is eyeing a comeback to competitive cricket by the mid or end of December.

“I am much better than before. I expect to make a comeback by mid-December or by the end of the year. The rehabilitation is going on keeping that in mind. So hopefully, if things go to plan I will make a comeback by that time,” Saha told reporters on the sidelines of the launch of Wiki, a sports fiction based on the life of a wicketkeeper.

“I have started knocking at the nets and taking throwdowns but I am not match fit yet.”

Saha has been out of action ever since his last Indian Premier League (IPL) match for Sunrisers Hyderabad in May due to a number of injuries, chief of which were a broken finger and a shoulder problem.

There was speculation around his injury too, with allegations surfacing that it was aggravated because of a bungled rehabilitation.

The 34-year old had initially been sidelined of the second and third Test in South Africa because of a hamstring injury before which he missed the latter stages of the IPL due to a finger injury, which was later revealed to be a broken thumb when he got ruled out of the Test match against Afghanistan.

Asked about his mental state during the rehab process and how is he eyeing a comeback to the Indian team, Saha said, “I have to come up the ranks like everybody. First I have to play domestic cricket and according to the performances, I will try and get back to the Indian team. I will have to get selected as well.”

Saha further said that the Indian team management is in touch with him through National Cricket Academy (NCA).

“I am in touch with the team management through the NCA. The message is being conveyed.”

Provided he is able to make a comeback in December, Saha can walk into the Bengal Ranji Trophy team with the domestic season just underway.

Bengal will take on Madhya Pradesh here on Monday in an Elite Group B game.

During Saha’s absence, dashing wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant made his Test debut on the England tour.

After a shaky start, the left-hander scored a blazing hundred in the Oval Test. Then, he followed it up with a half-century against the Windies in the first Test in Rajkot and is now a certainty in the side.

Saha has played 32 Tests and scored 1164 runs including three hundreds.