ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: With India opener Shikhar Dhawan set to miss the clash against New Zealand with a thumb fracture, there is a throw up for the No 4 spot as KL Rahul will in all probability play as an opener. If that is the case, Vijay Shanker or Dinesh Karthik could slot in at that spot. Both the cricketers were seen having a bat during India’s net session at Trent Bridge ahead of the New Zealand tie. Both the players looked in good touch and that is certainly going to make it difficult for the think-tank to pick one.

Here are shots from their batting session:

Meanwhile, young Rishabh Pant will fly to the UK to join the team as cover for Shikhar Dhawan, who will be under observation. Pant, who was initially not picked up when the 15-member squad was picked, is unlikely to be available for selection right away after he joins the team. If he plays or not will be decided by the team management after considering the status of Dhawan’s injury. There was a lot of hoopla over the selection of Dinesh Kartik over Pant from the World Cup squad with former India captain Sourav Ganguly going to the extent of saying that Virat Kohli and Co. will miss the big-hitting keeper-batsman in the mega event.

33-year-old Dhawan quoted legendary Urdu poet Rahat Indori on his Twitter page to show his intentions. “Kabhi mehek ki tarah hum gulon se udte hain…Kabhi dhuyein ki tarah hum parbaton se udte hain…Ye kainchiyaan humein udne se khaak rokengi…Ke hum paron se nahin hoslon se udte hain… (Sometimes we are like the fragrance of flowers, sometimes the smoke that comes out of mountains. How can any scissor cut short our flight as we don’t fly on wings but courage),” he posted.

Dhawan picked up the injury during the match-winning hundred against Australia on Sunday.

Team India will start favourites against the Blackcaps, they are still unbeaten in the tournament.