Luckless legspinner Todd Astle is on his way home from New Zealand's limited-overs tour to India.

The Canterbury allrounder suffered a groin tear after bowling just three balls in the opening warmup game on Tuesday night and after medical assessments over two days he's been counted out for the rest of the six-game tour.

The injury will have him ruled out of cricket for about three weeks.

Ish Sodhi, who was originally only named in the T20 squad, will replace Astle in the ODI side.

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"Todd was really impressive in the recent New Zealand A tour over here and had done everything he possibly could to get himself ready for this series," said New Zealand coach Mike Hesson.

"He deserved this opportunity and everyone in the team is certainly feeling for Todd.''

Astle's battle to get a foothold in the New Zealand team has suffered regular setbacks.

The 31-year-old made his test debut in Colombo in 2012, Ross Taylor's final test as captain, and Astle made a useful contribution, getting important second innings runs.

His other three international appearances have been two T20 internationals against Pakistan in January last year, and a second test, also against the Pakistanis in Christchurch last summer.

Astle is up against fellow legspinner Sodhi, plus left armer Mitchell Santner in the battle for New Zealand selection and he's been unable to push himself to the top of the heap in the selectors' eyes.

He impressed on the New Zealand A tour to India which preceded the senior visit there, catching the eye of Indian batting great Rahul Dravid, who gave him a solid rap after his four-wicket haul in one of the one-day fixtures against India A.

In 109 first class games, he's averaging 26 with the bat, and taken 312 wickets at 31 for Canterbury.

How he sits in the pecking order is not clear, but just when his form was good and he looked a chance to get an opportunity in favourable spin conditions, he's on his way home.

It is cruel luck for a cricketer who is regarded as an enthusiastic and useful performer, but who has had limited opportunities.

New Zealand play the second of their two warmup games in Mumbai later tonight. The first ODI against India is in Mumbai starting on Sunday night.