Virat Kohli has claimed that he will ask for a rest when he feels he needs it after the rumors suggested that he had asked the selectors for rest Sri Lanka series. He also emphasized that balance is necessary for the team and it’s humanly impossible to maintain the same level of performance.
Earlier, there were some reports which claimed that Kohli asked for rest after the second Test against the Lankans and for the upcoming ODI series. However, National Chief Selector MSK Prasad dismissed all the rumors by saying that the skipper had made himself available for the selection for all the three Test matches and that the management would give him some rest after that. After the series against Sri Lanka, India will tour South Africa for almost two months where they will play all formats of the game.
"Definitely I do need rest, why don't I need rest? When I think of the time my body should be rested, I'll ask for it. I am not a robot you can slice my skin and check I bleed," Kohli told reporters on the eve of India's first Test against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens from Thursday as quoted by IANS.
To manage the workload, selectors handed rest to all-rounder Hardik Pandya from the first two Tests of the Sri Lanka series. Kohli opined that the players who give that much extra on the field need rest and the situation is not understood by the fans.
"This is one thing which I don't think people explain properly. There is a lot of talk from the outside in terms of workload -- whether a player should be rested or should not be rested. All cricketers play 40 games in a year. Three guys who should get rest, their workloads are to be managed. 11 players play the game but not everyone would have batted 45 overs in an ODI game or not everyone would have bowled 30 overs in a Test match," Kohli assessed.
"But the ones who are doing it regularly need to be assessed because the body takes that much time to recover. People only look at 'oh everyone has played 40 games'. They don't look at time spent on the crease.”
Kohli added that there is always a calculation involved when players are rested for the series and people usually ignore that part.
"The number of runs that have been run between the wicket, the number of overs bowled in difficult conditions, what were the conditions, what were the temperatures like, have the bodies recovered or not -- I don't think people go into that analysis. So from the outside, it looks like 'why are people asking for rest, everyone has played a same number of games'.
"But not everyone has the same kind of workload in every game. Only those who have a major workload, for example, Pujara during a Test season he will have maximum workload because he spends so much time at the crease. His game is built that way. So you can't compare that to a counter-attacking batsman because the workload would have been lesser.
"So I think all these things have to be taken into consideration. Purely because of the fact that we have built such a strong core team now of 20-25 players, you don't want important players breaking down at important times for the team," Kohli elaborated.
Since the ICCI Champions Trophy, Pandya has played 30 matches across all formats. Recently, the 24-year-old said that he was the one who asked for rest to maintain his performing level in the upcoming time. Kohli said the balance needs to be maintained between players who need rest and which do not, and that was the way to manage workload.
"That is where the balance needs to be maintained going forward. If you have too much cricket going on, with guys who play all three formats, it's humanly impossible to maintain the same level of performance, what you do earlier in the season. Those details are very important while managing workload," he added.