'I am sure when he is...' What Rahul Dravid said about 'disciplinary action' against Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer

Dravid said it was tough to accommodate all the players into the squad

shreyas iyer batting pti Shreyas Iyer practising at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi | PTI

Categorically denying disciplinary issues as the reason behind Ishan Kishan's non-selection into India's T20 squad to face Afghanistan, head coach Rahul Dravid on Wednesday said the left-hander will be back into national fold once he makes himself available for selection.

Ishan Kishan last played for India in the third T20I against Australia at Guwahati on November 28, 2023.

Similarly, Shreyas Iyer's non-selection for the T20I series against the Afghans too had given fodder to the player indiscipline talks, but Dravid denied the rumours.

"Absolutely not. Ishan Kishan was not available for selection. Ishan had requested for a break in South Africa which we agreed to, and supported that," said Dravid in his pre-match press meet ahead of the first T20I against Afghanistan.

"Shreyas Iyer's case has absolutely nothing to do with any disciplinary issue. It is just that he missed out. There are a lot of batsmen in the team. He did not play in the T20s in the SA as well," said the former Indian captain.

However, Kishan might just have felt a bit sidelined after playing just two ODIs and three T20Is between October last year and this January, while India played a total of 14 ODIs and eight T20Is in this period.

In ODIs, KL Rahul was preferred over him for the wicketkeeper-batter's slot, while in T20Is the management opted to give Jitesh Sharma a go from the fourth T20I at home against the Aussies.

However, Dravid did not rule Kishan out of the India scheme of things.

"He has made himself unavailable for selection. I am sure when he is available (for selection), he will play domestic cricket (and comeback). So that was the case," said Dravid.

But as things stand now, the Jharkhand player will have to play out of his skin to return to the India tent. India do not have any more T20Is in their calendar ahead of the World Cup in June, and Kishan's only chance to impress the bigwigs is the upcoming IPL 2024.

But herein too Kishan will have to contend with competition from Rahul as he has expressed his willingness to bat in the middle-order as wicketkeeper batter for Lucknow Supergiants.

Dravid said it was tough to accommodate all the players into the squad or the first eleven.

"It is unfortunate because he is a fine player but there are a lot of batsmen and it is not easy to fit everyone into the squad or playing 11. No discipline issues were discussed, at least during my discussion with the selectors," said Dravid.

However, Shreyas will play for Mumbai in their Ranji Trophy match against Andhra from Friday, and PTI understands that the elegant right-hander will be a part of India's squad for the five-match Test series at home against England beginning later this month.

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