Speaking to CricketNext, a source in the know of developments said that Saha was given the option to pick between Mumbai and Manchester and the keeper picked the later. The player could require anything between six to eight months before he is back playing for the country.
“He was informed by the BCCI that surgery is the only option and that he could decide between Mumbai or Manchester to get the surgery done. His wife’s visa application has been forwarded by the board and the process shall be completed at the earliest."
“The surgery will take place either at the end of this month or early next month, depending on when they finally arrive in England. It is too early to speak about his return and a call can only be taken after taking a look at his recovery speed. It could be anything between 6 to 8 months,” he said.
It was believed that a thumb injury, sustained during the IPL, had kept India’s first-choice keeper Saha out of the Test squad for the first three matches of the upcoming series against England. However, it has now emerged that Saha has a major shoulder injury. He could well be out of contention for a place in the squad for the tour to Australia at the end of the year.
The situation Saha finds himself in is being blamed on the rehabilitation process going wrong at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru.
“Saha’s rehabilitation had been completely goofed up. The NCA physio bungled it. Once he is done with surgery, he will not touch the bat for at least two months and then the rehab will start,” the official said.
Saha is supposed to have sustained the shoulder injury during the tour of South Africa earlier in the year.
The BCCI released a timeline which further added to confusion instead of clearing the air.
"Saha reported at the NCA on January 29 with left proximal hamstring tendinopathy (pain in the upper left hamstring). Simultaneously he complained of right shoulder pain. Subsequently an MRI scan was done in February which revealed a Labral tear," it stated. It means the first shoulder injury was sustained in January, which the BCCI ultimately revealed in July.
The timeline states that after taking injections and a rehab of close to six weeks (standard time taken for healing of labral tear), Saha was declared fit on March 19, just two and half weeks before the IPL started.
As per the release, Saha once again sustained shoulder injury on May 7 and was again given ultrasound injections in Delhi. He was rested for five IPL games.
"During this period, on 15th of May, Saha requested to visit the NCA head physiotherapist, Ashish Kaushik, so that he could also review his right shoulder. Ashish assessed his right shoulder and concluded that its presentation was similar to how it had been in late January/early February.
"Ashish informed the Sunrisers Physiotherapist of this who then continued with his course of rehabilitation. The Team India Physiotherapist was informed of this sequence of events."
The next question left unanswered is if Kaushik assessed that Saha's condition was "similar to what it was in January and February" (when he first time sustained labral tear), how come Sunrisers Hyderabad or the BCCI allowed him to play the IPL game on May 25.
As per the timeline, Saha's thumb injury had healed on July 2 as per X-ray report.
Between July 3 and 13, Saha's shoulder injury "worsened" and steroid injections didn't help. An appointment was then fixed with Dr. Dinshaw Pardiwala, orthopaedic surgeon at Mumbai's Kokilaben Ambani Hospital, on July 6.
"Pardiwala opined that another steroid injection would assist Saha's recovery. He also stated that should the injury not respond to the injection, then surgery would be necessary.
"Post the injection, after observation and rehabilitation for five days, when his condition had not improved, he was declared unfit on the 13th of July and the India team management was informed of the same," the BCCI said.
But on July 18, when BCCI released the squad for first three Tests, there was no mention about what exactly was Saha's injury.
First Published: July 21, 2018, 8:14 AM IST