Explaining his absence for crucial tournaments like Asia Cup 2018, Indian coach Ravi Shastri said the 29-year-old needed this rest and it was a case of mental fatigue and giving him the break would ensure that he takes his mind off the sport and comes back fresh
Team India skipper Virat Kohli’s absence was felt in the Asia Cup. This year this was not the first time that Virat was not included in the squad. Earlier this year, Kohli was rested during the Nidahas Trophy, where Rohit Sharma led the team to victory. Kohli wasn't the first, even MS Dhoni was rested for the T20I tournament.
Explaining his absence for crucial tournaments like Asia Cup 2018, Indian coach Ravi Shastri said the 29-year-old needed this rest and it was a case of mental fatigue and giving him the break would ensure that he takes his mind off the sport and comes back fresh.
In an interview with Gulf News, the former team skipper said: “Virat needed this rest. Physically he is a bull. You can't give him out of the ground. And the thing with Virat is if he plays, then you know the level of intensity he brings. So it was a case of just mental fatigue, giving him a break, take your mind off cricket and then come back fresh."
In Virat’s absence, Sharma was handed over the charge of leading the team. He and batsman Shikar Dhawan scored consistently throughout the tournament and helped the team lift the trophy by defeating Bangladesh in the finals.
He added that all players would follow the same process so that they rejuvenate naturally. He pointed out the case of Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who were rested for the upcoming Test series against West Indies as the team management wanted to preserve them and keep them fresh for the future tournaments.
"We will have to do it with a lot of other players. You know like Bumrah (Jasprit Bumrah), Bhuvi (Bhuvneshwar Kumar), we have to sustain them and keep them energetic," he added.
In his comeback for the two-match Test series against West Indies, Kohli will be leading the home side against Jason holder-led side.
Rajkot will host the first Test of the series from October 4 while the second and the last Test will be played from October 12. Kohli is expected to lead the complete series against West Indies, that comprises three Tests, five ODIs and three T20Is.
Last Updated 11:38 AM IST