The team India is currently in Sri Lanka fighting it out in a three match Test series which they are already leading by a 2-0 margin. The Test series will be followed by a five-match ODI series and a solitary T20I and the Indian selectors must seriously give a thought of giving rest to captain Virat Kohli who has played non-stop cricket ever since India toured West Indies last year in August September.
The selectors will meet in a couple of days to pick the squad and they might be tempted to give break to Virat Kohli who has played a match every 3rd day ever since India’s tour of West Indies in 2016.
In the last year, India has played 43 International matches and Kohli has appeared in 42 of them- having missed the Dharamsala Test against Australia due to a shoulder injury.
Only Sri Lanka’s middle order batsman Kusal Mendis has played more international matches than Kohli during this period but when compared to Kohli’s 18 Tests, Kusal has played only 13 Tests. With another home season approaching soon, Kohli needs some time to keep himself fresh for the limited overs series against Australia and New Zealand followed by the full tour of Sri Lanka. India will play 3 Tests, 13 ODI’s and 11 T20I’s between September to December before heading off to South Africa in January.
It is highly unlikely that Kohli will sit out of the series against the Aussies given the fact that the Delhi batsman has scored tons of runs against the Kangaroos and will be eager to add some more to his tally. So the best chance for MSK Prasad & Co to give a Kohli a break should be this series. The Sri Lankans are struggling and after losing the ODI series to Zimbabwe pretty recently, it is highly unlikely that the Indian players will be tested even in the limited overs leg so it is the correct time for Kohli to spend some time off the field which will keep him charged up for the ODI series against Australia and New Zealand.
If Kohli is given a break then Anjinkya Rahane, Kohli’s deputy might take the charge but Rahane hasn’t yet made a permanent spot for himself in the ODI squad and played in West Indies only in the absence of Rohit Sharma. Rohit will definitely walk into the playing XI without a doubt and the selectors might also be tempted to give him the captaincy if Kohli is given a break. It must be noted here that Rohit Sharma is the most successful captain in the history of IPL.