IND vs NZ: Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma & Jasprit Bumrah amongst senior players likely to be rested for T20Is against New Zealand

Tired over continuous bio-bubbles, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah amongst senior players who are likely to be rested for the New Zealand T20I series that begins just three days after the T20 World Cup. The three-match T20I series will be played from October 17 in India.

The senior players including Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah and others have been in constant bio-bubbles. After the surprising rest they had because of the suspension of IPL 2021, they travelled to England for the WTC Final and 5-match Test series against England. That was followed by the IPL 2021 Phase 2 and now they are going to enter their third bio-bubble for the T20 World Cup, keeping them out of India since June 2021.

“Most of the Indian players, the senior ones, have now been in three back to back bubbles for four months. Possibly after the T20 World Cup, you would want them to take a break and rejuvenate before the South Africa tour starting December end,” source tracking development in the selection committee told PTI.

  • After a surprising month-long break before England tour due to IPL 2021 suspension, Virat Kohli & Co have spent five months outside the home.
  • They will enter their third consecutive bio-bubble with England series followed by IPL 2021 Phase 2 and T20 World Cup.
  • Even though most of them have their families with them on the tour, during the two-month stay in the UAE, they had to be confined t the hotel rooms and stadiums.
  • Kohli had already spoken about mental health and the necessity to have a break.
  • It will prompt selectors to look for a young squad with top IPL performers getting a go at New Zealand.
  • The likes of Harshal Patel, Sanju Samson and Avesh Khan are expected to part of India’s squad.

Instead, a young team will play the three T20 matches at home and the squad will comprise mainly of IPL performers including the likes of Avesh Khan, Harshal Patel and Venkatesh Iyer, Sanju Samson amongst others. India will play three T20Is matches on November 17, 19 and 21 at Jaipur, Ranchi and Kolkata. It will be followed by two Tests starting November 25 in Kanpur and December 3 in Mumbai.

While the bubble in England was a relaxed one, it also led to the fifth Test in Manchester being cancelled due to COVID-19 cases in the Indian camp. It’s a foregone conclusion that the likes of Kohli, Bumrah, and Mohammed Shami would be given a break.

Even Rohit, who has been playing non-stop since the home series against England, would need rest but with Kohli stepping down from T20 captaincy, it remains to be seen how the workload management is dealt with.

Such a scenario brings the likes of Ruturaj Gaikwad, Harshal Patel, Avesh Khan, and Venkatesh Iyer into contention for the short series.