Piyush Chawla boost for Gujarat ahead of Ranji Trophy quarters

The spinner — who moved to Gujarat this season from Uttar Pradesh and scalped 31 wickets in the five league matches — was out of action for a while due to a cut on his ‘spinning finger’.

Piyush Chawla’s will be in action for Gujarat in the Ranji Trophy quarterfinal against Bengal.   -  K.R. Deepak

Defending champion Gujarat received a shot in the arm ahead of its Ranji Trophy quarterfinal fixture against Bengal, with its star spinner Piyush Chawla returning to the side.

Chawla — who moved to Gujarat this season from Uttar Pradesh and scalped 31 wickets in the five league matches — was out of action for a while due to a cut on his ‘spinning finger’. But, ahead of the quarterfinal clash against Bengal at the Sawai Mansigh Stadium in Jaipur on October 7, the 28-year-old is back into the team.

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“The good thing is that Piyush is coming back into the side. He had a cut on his spinning finger, and we decided to rest him during the league phase,”Gujarat coach Hitesh Majmudar told Sportstar.

The coach also admitted that Chawla’s return would also bolster the team’s batting at the lower-order. “He is very handy with the bat down the order. With more than 5,000 runs in first class cricket, he will definitely help us with batting as well,” Majmudar said.

While it would be without the services of Axar Patel and Jasprit Bumrah, the Gujarat coach is happy to have got back young bowler Siddharth Desai back into the team.

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Having made his debut, Desai has already scalped 27 wickets from four games. He missed the last few league matches to play in the U-19 Challenger Trophy. “Both our performers are coming back into the side and that’s definitely a big thing ahead of the knockouts,” Majmudar added.

Heading to Jaipur, the defending champion will be hoping to maintain its supremacy.