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Rohit Sharma set to give playing time to fringe players against Sri Lanka

Rohit Sharma wants to give an extended run to players who are either in their initial days in India colours or have been irregular in the line-up

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Dec 09, 2017 23:24 IST
Abhishek Paul
Abhishek Paul
Dharamsala
India vs Sri Lanka,Rohit Sharma,Indian cricket team
Rohit Sharma (L) will be captaining India against Sri Lanka in the absence of Virat Kohli. (Getty Images)

Rohit Sharma is in the hot seat now. The duration may be short, for only three ODIs and three T20s, but the new Indian captain has his thought process clear.

Ahead of the first ODI against Sri Lanka in Dharamsala, Rohit acknowledged that he has several players in his side, who are either in their initial days in India colours or have been irregular in the line-up. Ahead of 2018, when India will mostly tour abroad, Rohit wants those players to get an extended run.

“It is important to give these guys fair amount of games before they prove themselves. It is important they get enough games and gain confidence. There are guys like Shreyas (Iyer), Manish (Pandey), Kedar (Jadhav) and Dinesh (Karthik), haven’t got enough games on the trot and as a team management we want to make sure that they get ‘N’ number of games continuously,” Rohit said on Saturday.

“They also completely understand that they need to perform, there is a lot of competition in the middle order, in fact everywhere, and they have to grab the opportunity and make it to the 11. We want to ensure they get that confidence by getting number of games under their belt and it is up to them what they do with that opportunity.”

India captaincy job

After having guided Mumbai Indians to three Indian Premier League (IPL) titles, leading India may be a bigger task, but Rohit said the process is similar.

“It will be completely a different ball game altogether. But the process and basics of captaincy remains the same. We have different set of players than the IPL team but having played with these guys for some time now, I do understand their strengths and weaknesses,” he said.

“I don’t need to change anything, I just need to carry from where we left as a team. Yes, IPL and international cricket is completely different, the pressure and mindset of the players is absolutely different. For me also, I will not change much. I will try to be at the present and make those changes when necessary.”

Bumrah’s growth

Rohit was also effusive in his praise for his Mumbai and Indian teammate Jasprit Bumrah, who got his maiden call-up in the Test team for the South Africa away Test series, starting on January 5.

“He (Bumrah) has played with me in Mumbai and I have seen him grow in every game. Every series that he has played, he has come up (with) new strategies, new plans. It is good to see he has matured as a bowler. He understands what he needs to do and what (the) team expects out of him,” Rohit said about the young fast bowler.

“He is a very focused guy, very disciplined in terms of his work ethics. This is what is giving him the results on the field. Yes, he had a good month and a half time off and he went to NCA, worked on his body again and rejuvenated, he looks a lot fresher now.”

First Published: Dec 09, 2017 16:50 IST