Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja- ICC
Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja- ICC

Virat Kohli, India’s most successful Test skipper, is set to lead an incredibly talented bunch of Indian players in the Test series against South Africa. However, there are injury concerns that will hurt India, but Virat Kohli can rely on the amazing bench strength of the team that has bailed them out of trouble whenever needed.

While India has the depth to make up for the loss of quality players, Virat Kohli mentioned how the absence of two players, in particular, will be felt when the team takes on South Africa in the three-Test series.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli[photo: Twitter]

Virat Kohli: India Will Miss Rohit Sharma’s Abilities But It’s An Opportunity For Mayank Agarwal And KL Rahul To Step Up And Solidify Start

Injuries to batsman Shubman Gill, spin all-rounders Axar Patel, Ravindra Jadeja, and spinner Rahul Chahar came as a big blow, and the worries only escalated when vice-captain opener Rohit Sharma pulled his hamstring and was ruled out for all 3 Tests against the Proteas. Yet, Virat Kohli’s India will believe they have a chance to script history.

While India has the depth to make up for the loss of quality players, Virat Kohli mentioned how the absence of two players, in particular, will be felt, Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja. With Priyank Panchal coming in as the third opener, after Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul, India has the opening combination sorted for the three-Test series starting December 26 in Centurion.

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma. Image Credits: Twitter

“We will miss his abilities a lot. He has proven in England already that he has really worked his Test game out and his opening partnership was very important for us to play in that series the way we did so his experience, his skills… we will miss his qualities.

“But having said that, it is an opportunity for someone like Mayank and KL to step up and solidify that start for us which we got in the last series and make sure is carried forward in this series as well,” Kohli said on Wednesday.

Rohit Sharma scored 906 runs in 21 innings playing 11 Tests at 47.68 with two centuries and four fifties in the year 2021. Rohit Sharma averages 46.88 in his career of 43 Tests.

Virat Kohli: Ravindra Jadeja Has Been An Important Player As He Contributes In All 3 Departments Which Is Invaluable In Overseas

While Rohit Sharma’s injury is something India could really have done without for such a big series, Ravindra Jadeja getting ruled out is another big blow. The all-rounder has shown remarkable growth in batting and his left-arm spin has always been a deal-breaker for India.

His electrifying fielding has done wonders and that aspect will certainly be missed by the team. That being said, Virat Kohli is confident of replacement players making a mark and hopes the all-rounder will be back in time.

“Jadeja has obviously been a very important player for us. He contributes in all three departments of the game which is invaluable playing especially in overseas conditions. He will obviously be missed but having said that we do have qualities in the side to be able to create the best combination possible for us and still be in situations to win Test matches,” added Kohli.

Ravindra Jadeja (Image Credit: Twitter)
Ravindra Jadeja (Image Credit: Twitter)
“We have created that type of bench strength where people coming in seize the opportunities. So as much as we will miss him, I don’t think it will be a deciding factor in this series or moving forward. I wish him a speedy recovery and hope that he comes back soon.”

India’s premier allrounder Ravindra Jadeja is likely to retire from Test Cricket to prolong his limited-overs career. The 33-year old left-arm spinner is considering this option because of the workload for him in all 3 international formats and IPL.

Notable that he will miss the 3-Test series in South Africa due to an injury in his right forearm. For some reason, he missed out on the second Test at home against New Zealand in Mumbai. In January he sustained a thumb injury in Sydney so he missed the famous Gabba Test and 4-test series against England at home.

In Pataudi Trophy against England in August-September, he was constantly getting the nod ahead of Ravichandran Ashwin. He has been instrumental to take India to no.1 ranking in Test Cricket. In his 57-test matches career so far he has picked 232 wickets with an average of 24.84 and also scored 2195 runs with an average of 33.76.

Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel-the 2 spinners besides opening batsman Shubman Gill will take some months to be completely fit after sustaining injuries before the tour of South Africa.

Ravindra Jadeja’s ligament tear will take months to heal and if he undergoes surgery, he will only get fit before the IPL 2022 next year. Shubman Gill’s shin injury has resurfaced. He had missed the Test series in England due to the same problem after the WTC Final.