India in West Indies 2017 June 15, 2017

Kohli backs decision to rest Rohit Sharma from West Indies tour

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Virat Kohli emphasised the need to be careful about Rohit Sharma's fitness © Getty Images

The decision to rest Rohit Sharma from India's upcoming limited-overs tour of the West Indies was a "smart" one, according to the captain Virat Kohli, who stressed the need to monitor the opener's fitness after a "massive hip surgery".

India are going to the Caribbean for five ODIs and a T20 international immediately after the Champions Trophy, and Kohli said Rohit had been left out of the squad with the view of ensuring his fitness for bigger assignments - tours to Sri Lanka and South Africa - later in the year.

"Rohit has come back and really had a full IPL season, which has been hectic," Kohli said after India won the semi-final against Bangladesh on Thursday; the squad had been announced by the BCCI during the course of the game. "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 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."

Rohit suffered his injury during the home ODIs against New Zealand in October last year, and missed home series against England, Bangladesh and Australia. He returned to action during the IPL and led Mumbai Indians to the title, and made his India comeback in the ongoing Champions Trophy.

His unbeaten 123 off 129 balls in the semi-final against Bangladesh vaulted Rohit to second place in the list of highest run-scorers in the tournament - 304 runs in four innings at a strike rate of 87.60.

Nagraj Gollapudi is a senior assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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  • AjuRao on June 22, 2017, 9:11 GMT

    India should have gone with a younger team to W1 with Kohli and Rahane to gauge some of the youngsters . Ideal team would have been- Rahane , Pant , Kohli , Shreyas Iyer, Karun Nair , Kedar Jadhav , Jadeja , Bhuvaneshwar , Kuldeep , Shardul Thakur and Umesh. 12th man Aniket Choudhry

    Others Ankit Rajpoot , Unadkat and Y Chahal . When else will you give new guys a chance if not against West Indies?

  •   Dheeraj Vc on June 22, 2017, 4:40 GMT

    We need to protect Rohit from failing in Finals against good bowling attacks. Never have I seen him dominate a good attack on a challenging track. overrated player.

  • DextersLab on June 22, 2017, 2:45 GMT

    I am still counting the total number of useful innings by Rohit as 3. His QF century in WC and his 100 against Australian attack with Starc and Co before world cup and may be a couple of good 70's against quality team. If I remember even Robin Singh who represented India in limited ODIs have played many more match winning useful knocks. He is definitely an Ok player but Indian cricket's obsessiveness with his talent is blocking less stylish but consistent players.

  • cricfan88323823 on June 20, 2017, 15:10 GMT

    Yuraj done fot cricket .slector messiing with other youngster carrier

  •   Zaheer Hussain on June 20, 2017, 15:07 GMT

    Looks like this tour was pre-planned just to recover from Champions Trophy disaster though not necessarily by Pakistan. The Champions Trophy proved that Ashwin and Jadeja are liabilities outside of India. India should start planning and preparing for the 2019 World Cup, which will again be in England. Dhoni and Yuvraj will be 37 by then and too old. India should looking for replacement of these 4 players. India should also send some bowlers and to England to participate in county matches there and gain experience.

  • sharrenstone on June 19, 2017, 18:29 GMT

    India shud hv played young players in windies tour. My xi for wi odis- 1. Dhawan 2.pant 3.kohli 4.yuvraj 5.dhoni 6.jadhav 7.pandya 8. Kuldeep 9. Shami 10. B kumar 11.u yadav.... india could hv sent players like sarfraz,chahal, karn sharma, karun, ankit rajpoot, unadkat, aniket chaudhry, sheldon jackson etc.

  • cricfan2729615267 on June 19, 2017, 11:04 GMT

    No doubt Rohit is talented. I would like to question his temperament and courage against the strong sides and big matches and in chasing. He had hardly performed when mattered. People who play for personal milestones can achieve good stats, not hearts.

  • cricfan5549624204 on June 18, 2017, 16:40 GMT

    Among the Indian batsmen I have watched batting, talent wise, I give second rank to Rohit. First is, no doubt, Virender Sehwag. By casually sweeping the bat, they can make big scores. Three "t"s are important for a player ie. talent, technique and temperament. All were in equal mix in Sachin and Gavaskar, that is why they are great achievers. Azhar, Ganguly etc were high in talent, far low in temperament and moderate in technique. They were underachievers. Rahul Dravid was high in technique and temperament. So even with a lower talent compared to Azhar, Ganguly and Sehwag he reached more heights. I couldn't see batting of Vishwanath, Vengsarkar, Pataudy, Hazare or Vijay Manjrekar, who might have better talent.

  • cricfan29738036 on June 18, 2017, 15:07 GMT

    India dont need Rohit ,Virat or Dhoni for the West Indies tour. They can hammer the West Indies without a few of their senior their key players .

  • Gurung42 on June 17, 2017, 10:27 GMT

    Rohit is one of the best ODI openers of our time. Wish to see him in test matches as well.

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