New Delhi - India's medium-pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been
ruled out of the third and final Test against New Zealand due to a back strain
with uncapped Shardul Thakur replacing him in Indore.
Kumar sustained the injury during India's series-clinching
win in Kolkata, according to an Indian cricket board release.
The 26-year-old Kumar played a key role in India's 178-run
win in the second Test after taking six wickets in the match including a
five-wicket haul in the first innings.
Kumar's injury is a double blow to India's seam attack after
Ishant Sharma was ruled out with the mosquito-borne disease chikungunya ahead
of the three-match series.
Medium-pacer Thakur, who is yet to play an international
match for India, was part of the team's tour to the West Indies in July-August.
The final Test starts October 8 at Indore's Holkar Cricket