Hardik Pandya has joined the Indian camp underway at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore. The India all-rounder, out of action since the 2021 T20 World Cup, will have to undergo fitness tests for the next couple of days before BCCI allows him to play in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Hardik has been named captain by the newly added IPL franchise, Gujarat Titans.

According to a report by News Agency PTI, BCCI will not allow Hardik to feature in IPL 2022 until he clears all the fitness tests at the NCA.

“Hardik will be at the NCA for next two days and appear in the various fitness tests. He is a centrally contracted cricketer and has not played any cricket since T20 World Cup in UAE,” a BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

“He would need to pass the fitness test as it has been mandatory for some time now. Last year, even Shreyas Iyer appeared for a fitness test post shoulder surgery before playing IPL,” he added.

The Gujarat Titans are currently undergoing quarantine, and their practice session will start at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Motera from Thursday (March 17).

Meanwhile, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) official said the franchise still has no confirmation on the exact availability period of their star pacer Deepak Chahar. Bought for a whopping price of INR 14 crore, Chahar suffered a hamstring injury during the T20I series against Sri Lanka, and franchise CEO Kasi Viswanathan confirmed that the Super Kings would take a final call on him or his potential replacement only after they receive the full report from the NCA.

“At this stage, we are not thinking of a replacement yet,” the CSK official said.

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