Image courtesy of: Zimbio
India captain Virat Kohli has said that the decision to rest opener Rohit Sharma for the upcoming limited overs tour of the West Indies was a “smart” one.
Rohit had to undergo “massive hip surgery” after injuring himself during the ODI series against England last October. He made his comeback at the Indian Premier League (IPL) in April, where he captained the Mumbai Indians to glory, and then went on to be selected in India’s Champions Trophy squad.
The decision to leave him out of the side for the trip to the Caribbean can be attributed to the fact that the national selectors want him to be fully fit when India travel to Sri Lanka and South Africa later this year.
“Rohit has come back and really had a full IPL season, which has been hectic,” Kohli said. “They [Mumbai Indians] reached the final, so he got lesser rest than anyone else. Plus he had a massive hip surgery, so muscles around that area are always vulnerable, and today also he felt a bit of stiffness in his right knee.
“There is no doubt about Rohit’s ability and what he brings to the team. We need to protect him going further, because [in the] latter half of the year we have massive tours coming up, and his batting contribution will be a huge factor for us. So we want him to be careful because after a massive surgery you do need to be careful. If you push yourself a little too hard then it snaps again, you’re out for seven, eight months.
“It is a conscious decision by everyone to give him a break. He is making the most of the form he is in right now. And I’m sure he also knows and understands the whole situation.”
India will look to retain their Champions Trophy title on Sunday when they take on arch-rivals Pakistan in the final. It was Rohit was starred in India’s semi-final against Bangladesh as he was named Man of the Match for his unbeaten knock of 123, which allowed his country to clinch a convincing nine-wicket win.