India vs Australia - "Mental Headspace...": Rahul Dravid Reveals Real Reason Behind Resting Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma For Australia ODIs
Rahul Dravid revealed the reasons behind resting Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma for the first two ODIs between India and Australia
Ahead of the first ODI against Australia, Indian head coach Rahul Dravid on Thursday said that Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma have been rested as the team wanted them to be fresh mentally and physically for the Cricket World Cup 2023. India will take on Australia in a three-match ODI series, starting from the first ODI at Mohali on Thursday. It will be India's final assignment before the ICC Cricket World Cup at home from October 5 onwards. "It is one of those series, where you have seen that some of our boys are not playing the first two games. We will rotate our pacers a bit. It will be nice for some other guys that they are given this opportunity to play three tough games before the World Cup," said Dravid in a pre-match press conference.
"I think with people like Rohit and Virat, from our perspective, it is important that they reach the first game of the World Cup with the physical and mental headspace they want to be in. With the amount of cricket they have played, they know how to prepare themselves for these big games. A lot of these decisions are discussed with them. We discuss with them how they would like to prepare leading up to big events. Based on these discussions, we come up with these mutual decisions," he added.
On the return of spin-bowling all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin to the ODI set-up after a year, Dravid clarified that the spinner was always in the plans.
"Having someone of Ashwin's experience is always good for us. He gives you experience, the ability to contribute with the bat at number eight. He is someone we taught about in case of an injury or an opportunity opened up. He was always in our plans. He has not played much ODI cricket for a while, but someone of his experience can deal with that," said the coach.
India squad for first 2 ODI: KL Rahul (C & WK), Ravindra Jadeja (Vice-captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Ishan Kishan (wicketkeeper), Shardul Thakur, Washington Sundar, R Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, Prasidh Krishna
India squad for final ODI: Rohit Sharma (C), Hardik Pandya, (Vice-captain), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul (wicketkeeper), Ishan Kishan (wicketkeeper), Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Axar Patel (subject to fitness), Washington Sundar, Kuldeep Yadav, R Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj.