Rohit Sharma’s injury has been the centre of plenty of twists and turns in the build-up to India’s tour of Australia. When the squad was picked for the tour, Rohit Sharma’s name was excluded after he had missed a couple of games due to a hamstring injury. However, the day the squad was selected, Mumbai Indians uploaded a photo of him practicing. To confound matters further, Rohit Sharma played the IPL 2020 playoffs after BCCI president Sourav Ganguly said that Rohit’s hamstring injury needed to be managed. Mumbai Indians went on to win the title and immediately, Rohit Sharma went to the NCA for rehabilitation.

The whole episode of Rohit Sharma’s unavailability for the tour to Australia has prompted Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli to state that the whole episode has created a lot of uncertainty. In the pre-match press conference, Virat Kohli said, “Before we had the selection meeting in Dubai, we had got an email two days before that, which said that he is unavailable for selection [as] he has picked an injury during the IPL. And it mentioned there was a two-week rest and rehab period. The pros and cons and the implications of the injury has been explained to him and he understood that. And he was unavailable for selection. That was the information we got on mail before the selection meeting. After that he played in the IPL, so we all thought he would be on that flight to Australia, which he wasn’t. And we had no information whatsoever on the reason on why he is not traveling with us.”

Confounding situation

Rohit Sharma’s injury and rehabilitation has meant that he is officially ruled out of the first two Tests and is racing against time to be fit for the Sydney and Brisbane Tests. However, with no international flights in India until December 31 and the mandatory quarantine period of 14 days in Australia, it remains to be seen how Rohit Sharma is fit in time for the Tests.

In addition, Rohit did not travel with the squad to Australia for the rehabilitation as according to the BCCI injury protocol, Rohit must undergo rehab at the NCA and nowhere else. However, this was modified in the case of Wriddhiman Saha, who suffered a hamstring injury for Sunrisers Hyderabad in IPL 2020 but was given the green signal from the BCCI medical team that he would be fit for the Tests and can undergo rehabilitation in Australia.

“Yeah, it definitely would have increased the chances of both of them playing Test matches. Someone like Saha, who also had an injury during the IPL and is here and doing rehab with the team, so we are aware of his progress and he is on the right path to make sure that he is fit and available in time to play the Test series. And same would have been the case with Ishant and Rohit as well – it would have given them a chance to get themselves fit and be available for the start of the Test series,” Kohli said.

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