Lucknow Super Giants’ young pace sensation Mayank Yadav is likely to miss the rest of the Indian Premier League (IPL) season, confirmed team head coach Justin Langer here on Saturday.

Speaking on the eve of his side’s match against Kolkata Knight Riders, Langer said that Mayank suffered a muscle tear during his side’s last game against Mumbai Indians. The right-arm quick, who had suffered a similar injury earlier in the season, failed to complete his four overs in his side’s win against MI. 

“He [Mayank] just had a scan. He has got a small tear in a similar area to his last injury. It is very unfortunate. He had his rehabilitation and went into the [Mumbai Indians] game completely pain-free,” said Langer.

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“We will be praying that he can play hopefully in the playoff. But I am a realist. It will probably be difficult for him to return for the backend of the tournament.”

LSG is currently third in the points table and will take on second-placed KKR on Sunday in a contest that could potentially define the final standings.

“They [KKR] are playing well. They have won seven and we have won six. We are both in pretty good form and it will be a good contest. GG [Gautam Gambhir] was here last year. So, he knows our squad very well. But this is like facing bowling. We can know as much as we want to know about each other. Everyone knew Shane Warne had a flipper. But you still had to face it and have an answer in the middle. It just comes out to what you do out in the middle,” pointed out Langer.

The former Australian batter also singled out Sunil Narine for praise as he highlighted the importance of the West Indian all-rounder for KKR.

“Narine at the top order is someone we have to work very hard at. When you have Narine opening the batting as a specialist bowler, then it means they bat very deep. We are aware of that and have done our homework.”

Langer also offered his two cents on the Impact Player rule as he spoke about the burden it adds to the team management in terms of decision-making. 

“It [Impact Player rule] makes for exciting cricket. The bowlers are unhappy and if you are a selector or a coach you are not happy either. It used to be about picking 11 players. Now for every game you have to pick 16 players and work out just in case this or that happens and it gets confusing. Time will tell us. The game of cricket has been about 11 players. But with the Impact Player, it is adding something to the IPL. It adds more pressure to everyone,” added Langer.