Virat Kohli says he’s ‘not a robot’, will ask for rest when needed
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Virat Kohli says he’s ‘not a robot’, will ask for rest when needed

Virat Kohli said that he is in no hurry to take a break as the Indian cricket team skipper gears up for the first Test match against Sri Lanka in Kolkata.

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Nov 15, 2017 22:42 IST
Dhiman Sarkar
Dhiman Sarkar
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
India vs Sri Lanka,Virat Kohli,Hardik Pandya
Virat Kohli, Indian cricket team skipper, during a training session at Eden Garden ahead of the 1st Test against Sri Lanka.(PTI)

Slice my skin and see if I bleed, said Virat Kohli when Hindustan Times asked him whether in all this talk of managing workload, he feels the need for a break.

“Definitely, I do need a rest, why not? When I think of the time my body should be rested I will ask for it. I’m not a robot, you can slice my skin and check if I still bleed,” said Kohli, ahead of the first Test against Sri Lanka beginning at Eden Gardens here on Thursday.

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Saying that it is humanly impossible to maintain intensity levels shown at start of the season, especially for those who play all formats, Kohli also took a veiled dig at those who questioned players’ need for rest.

Twice at Wednesday’s media interaction, as the Eden Gardens lay between sheets to protect the ground from incessant rain, Kohli spoke of ‘so much cricket’ before detailing why players need to be given a break because “this is one thing I don’t think people explain properly.”

“There’s a lot of talk from outside in terms of workload whether a player should be rested or not... For example, all cricketers play 40 games a year but there could be three guys who need to be rested because their workloads have to be managed.

The Eden Gardens pitch was kept under covers because of the sudden rainfall in Kolkata. (HT Photo)

“Not everyone in the XI would have batted 45 overs or not everyone would have bowled 30 overs in a Test. But the guys who are doing that regularly are the ones who need to be assessed,” said Kohli.

The answer didn’t mention Hardik Pandya who has asked to be rested for this series. But Kohli did mention Cheteshwar Pujara.

“For example, Pujara will have maximum workload in this series because he spends a lot of time at the crease as his game is built that way. You can’t compare that to a counter-attacking batsman because the workload would have been lesser. All these things have be taken into consideration purely because of the fact that we have built such a strong core team now of 20-25 players that you don’t want important players breaking down at important times,” he said.

Over the past three days, Wriddhiman Saha and Ajinkya Rahane too spoke about how to stay fresh in these days of almost year-round cricket. On Tuesday, Rahane said training and recovery are both important and the team management’s emphasis on pool sessions, ice baths, massages help them recover.

Speaking on Monday, Saha had added the importance of a good night’s sleep and strength training to that. “It is to take care of yourself because in future we will be playing a lot of matches,” said Rahane on Tuesday.

First Published: Nov 15, 2017 14:40 IST