Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
India captain Virat Kohli has revealed that he will only play the fourth Test against Australia in Dharamsala on Saturday if he is 100 per cent fit.
Kohli has been nursing a right shoulder injury, which he sustained while fielding on the first day of the third Test in Ranchi.
On Thursday, the Indian skipper was given a pain-killing injection and only threw underarm during his side’s fielding session. He also opted not to bat in the nets and was seen with strapping on the shoulder he hurt.
“When we put these things in place the first thing I said was ‘I’m not different from anybody else’,” Kohli said on Friday. “The same process applies for me as it does all the other members of the team.
“There’s no special treatment for anyone. If I’m 100 per cent fit for the game is the only condition that I will take the field.
“The physio wants to give it a bit more time till I can test myself and will probably make a call on it later tonight or tomorrow before the game. We’ll have to give it that much time more for me to make that call with the physiotherapist.”
Kohli did take to the nets on Friday, but was only given gentle throwdowns before spending the rest of the training session talking to his team-mates.
The main issue for Kohli will be fielding as in the third Test, he injured his shoulder in the 40th over and did not return for the remainder of the opening day. He also spent the entire second day in the dressing room.
“At this stage the injury has an element of being aggravated in the field,” Kohli said. “While batting there’s no problem whatsoever of it getting aggravated.
“I’ve taken medication after last game so I’m hoping it takes some more time for me to get back to the normal movements I have (when fully fit).”
Kohli is set to have a fitness test on Saturday morning in order to determine whether he will be fit enough to feature in the fourth Test.
“That (fitness test) is full match scenario; playing against 140kph bowling, reactive movements in the field, (and) whether I can move as well as when I’m 100 per cent or not,” he said.
However, should the 28-year-old be ruled out of the match, it would no doubt be a huge blow for India, but he is confident that his side will get the job done and clinch the series, which currently stands at 1-1.
“I’m sure the guys will take it as an opportunity to still take the team ahead,” Kohli, who is only averaging 9.20 with the bat in the series, said. “Everyone is really proud and motivated to play for the country.
“Me playing or not playing shouldn’t make that much of a difference to the other 10 guys because they have a responsibility to fulfil as well.
“I have not done anything special so far but still the guys have fought it out and that’s why we’re the No.1 team in the world.
“We have quality players in the side who want to step up given these opportunities. If that happens I’m sure the guys are looking at it as the game-changing game of their lives.”