Indian skipper Virat Kohli has broken his silence on the Rohit and Ishant fiasco and has expressed bewilderment as to why the duo did not board the flight to Australia in the first place. Kohli further has claimed that there was zero clarity from the BCCI on the situation surrounding Rohit.
On the eve of the commencement of the tour of Australia, Indian skipper Virat Kohli has broken his silence on the fiasco and uncertainty surrounding the participation of Rohit Sharma and Ishant Sharma. While the entirety of the Indian contingent travelled to Australia post the conclusion of the IPL, Rohit and Ishant were asked to rehab at the NCA in Bengaluru and pass fitness Tests before travelling Down Under. The subsequent move to not send the duo to Australia has now put their participation in jeopardy as strict quarantine rules Down Under means that both Ishant and Rohit have all but no chance to now make it in time for the commencement of the Tests.
Addressing the media prior to the first ODI, skipper Virat Kohli questioned why the duo did not board the flight alongside the others and cited the example of Wriddhiman Saha who is currently undergoing rehab in Australia. Kohli claimed that both Ishant and Rohit would have had a great chance of getting fit on time had they, like Saha, boarded the flight with the rest the squad.
“Yeah, if Rohit and Ishant had flown to Australia, it definitely would have increased their chances of playing the Test matches. Someone like a Saha, who injured his hamstring in the IPL, is here doing his rehab with the team so we are aware of his progress and he is on the right path to make sure he is fit and available in time to play the Test series,” Kohli said in the press conference.
“And same would have been the case with Ishant and Rohit as well. It would have given the chance to get themselves fit and be available for the start of the Test series. Right now there is so much uncertainty on if they are going to make it at all, it definitely would have been very helpful in them getting fit if they were here and doing the rehab just like Saha is, with the team, to get fit for the Test series.”
While Ishant flew back home mid-way during the IPL, Rohit was specifically sent back home post the conclusion of the tournament, despite the 33-year-old featuring in three matches for MI towards the fag end. Contradicting statements were made about Rohit’s fitness by MI physio, BCCI President Ganguly and coach Ravi Shastri, all of whom had their own theories as to why Rohit was left out of the preliminary squad.
Opening up on the fiasco, Kohli revealed that Rohit was initially left out of the squad due to an official mail the board received, on his fitness, but claimed that he had no idea what happened afterwards. The Indian skipper expressed bewilderment over the events that have since unfolded and termed the BCCI’s handling of the situation as “less than ideal”.
“Before we had the selection meeting in Dubai, we got a mail two days before that which said that he is unavailable for selection because he picked up an injury during the IPL. And it mentioned that there’s a two-week rest-and-rehab period. It said that the pros and cons and the implications of the injury have been explained to him and he understood that. That was the information that we got on mail before the selection meeting."
“After that, he played in the IPL so we all thought he was going to be on that flight to Australia which he wasn’t. And we had no information whatsoever on the reason why he is not travelling with us and after that, the only other information officially we have received on mail is that he is in the NCA and he is being assessed and he will be further assessed on 11 December.
“From the time the selection meeting happened to the IPL to now, there has been no information, there has been lack of clarity. We’ve been playing the waiting game on the issue for a while now, which is not ideal at all. It’s been very confusing and there’s been uncertainty and lack of clarity on the situation.”