Five-time champions India have rested regular skipper Virat Kohli rested following a straining tour of England. In his absence, Rohit Sharma will lead India for the upcoming Asia Cup, to be played in UAA. The tournament gets underway on September 15 with the final to be played on September 28 .
It features Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Afghanistan and a qualifier. India play their first match on September 18, just a week after the last day of fith Test against England. The selection committee led by MSK Prasad today announced the Asia Cup squad in Mumbai. Virat Kohli is given rest so as that he prepares well for next year’s World Cup in England. Shikhar Dhawan has been named vice-captain while Khaleel Ahmed is the new face in the squad.
In a significant move, Kedar Jadhav makes a comeback into the 16-member squad after recovering from a hamstring injury sustained during the Indian Premier League. Ambati Rayudu also finds a place in the team. Suresh Raina gets the axe, having earlier replaced Rayudu for the England series.
MSK Prasad said that the skipper’s workload management is paramount as he had issues with back injury in the earlier Tests in England this summer. Before the England series, Kohli had missed his Surrey County stint due to a neck injury. Then, during the second Test at Lord’s, the India captain suffered a lower-back strain. At the Nidahas Trophy in Sri Lanka, between India’s tour of South Africa and the IPL, the selectors decided to send a second-string side.
“Considering the workload, we have given him (Kohli) rest. He has been playing continuously for quite some time. He’s on the road from the IPL. So that is why looking at the workload we have given him rest,” Prasad added.