The Men in Blue have started their New Zealand tour in a fantastic way. They have won the first game of the five-match ODI series. It was their first win in the country against the Kiwis in the last 10 years.
Skipper Virat Kohli has been playing continuously since the Australian tour. This is why the BCCI selectors have decided to rest him. Kohli will not play the last two ODI matches and the entire T20I series.
The third ODI will be played on January 28. BCCI has said that after the third ODI, Rohit Sharma will lead the team in place of Kohli. The rest has been given in order to manage Kohli’s workload ahead of the all-important World Cup.
Previously pacer Jasprit Bumrah was also rested before the ODIs against Australia. He is also not part of the ongoing series against New Zealand. Interestingly no replacement of Kohli has yet been named. It would be interesting to see if Shubman Gill gets to make his debut at the highest level.
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Statement of BCCI
“India Captain Virat Kohli will be rested for the fourth and fifth ODI against New Zealand and the subsequent T20I series. Considering his workload in the last few months, the team management and Senior selection committee is of the view that it would be ideal for him to get adequate rest ahead of the home series against Australia. There will be no replacement for Mr. Kohli in the squad for the New Zealand series. Rohit Sharma will captain the side in the final two ODIS and T20I,” the statement read.
Kohli has always given his best in every match since the team landed in Australia. However he suffers from his back injury from time and again. As a result he needs to rest after every few matches.
The decision of the BCCI will prove very fruitful. This is because at this moment the World Cup is the most important tournament. India will definitely need the captain and the best player in prime form.