New Delhi: Thanks to the hectic international schedule of the Indian team, skipper Virat Kohli hardly gets time off the field. But with the BCCI deciding to give him a well-earned rest after the tour of South Africa, Kohli is making the most of his time away from the game as he is enjoying life with wife Anushka Sharma. The couple got married just prior to the tour of the Rainbow Nation.
The Indian team is playing a T20I tri-series in Sri Lanka and the top cricketers have been rested for the tournament. Skipper Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya are not part of the squad for the series.
In skipper Kohli’s absence Rohit Sharma is leading Team India. Rohit had earlier captained India in an ODI series against Sri Lanka in 2017. The team had won two games under his leadership, and lost one.
India has been playing non-stop cricket for the past few months, and have been on the South Africa tour since Jan this year. So the BCCI and the key players mutually agreed to give the series a miss.
“What is the point of sending these cricketers after such a hectic South African tour,” a team source had said.
Skipper Rohit will be desperate to get back to form as a resurgent India look to set their record straight against hosts Sri Lanka in the third match of the Nidahas Tri-Series on Monday.
The stand-in skipper, possibly the most prolific white ball player after regular leader Virat Kohli, has gone off the boil since the start of the South Africa series.
He will like to score heavily to get his confidence back as he frets on whether he could give Rishabh Pant another game in the tournament. Touted as Dhoni’s successor, Pant is yet to do justice to his immense potential till now. With someone like KL Rahul waiting for his chance, time is running out for the burly youngster from Rourkee.
Rahul’s presence gives his skipper an option to use him as an opener and himself come at No 4, dropping Pant from the XI. It was not a perfect start for India’s second string squad in the tournament as they lost by five wickets against the hosts in the opening match.
But the Rohit-led side bounced back strongly to beat Bangladesh by six wickets in their next match. So the match would provide India with a chance to make amends for the mistakes they committed against the Islanders in the opener.
The tournament is currently evenly poised as all the three teams have won a game each from two outings but Sri Lanka are leading the table on net run rate ahead of India and Bangladesh. But a win would take India to the top, dislodging the Lankans.