Virat Kohli’s childhood coach Rajkumar Sharma has raised questions over BCCI’s rehabilitation programme, claiming the lack of fast-bowling options in the white ball squad playing in New Zealand. Saying that they had a pool of 8-10 fast bowlers till last year, he added that most of them are either injured or battling fitness issues now as well.
He asked: “Where have those fast bowlers, who were bowling 140 kph till last year, disappeared? Why didn’t we preserve and rotate them? Why didn’t we manage them? It’s not like they have left India. They are still here but are injured. Why is our rehab not working? Why do we have to suddenly scamper in search of fast bowlers? If we are looking after the workload management of players, why are so many fast bowlers getting injured? Definitely something is going wrong somewhere. It wasn’t happening earlier.”
He also backed the pace-bowling all-rounder Deepak Chahar to replace Thakur in the Indian playing XI for the second ODI on Sunday (November 27) in Hamilton as well.
Karim added: “Among the available resources now, I want Deepak Chahar to play. Between Chahar and Shardul Thakur, you would prefer Chahar as the opening bowler. Chahar can also do the job with the bat. Playing Thakur is a defensive move.”
Meanwhile, apart from the pacers, leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal also proved ineffective in the first game. He registered figures of 0-67 from his ten overs as well.
While talking about this, Rajkumar Sharma explained: “Chahal is an attacking bowler. But he was benched right through the T20 World Cup, despite being the team’s premier spinner. His confidence might have taken a hit. When you have to sit out constantly, you also start doubting your own ability. It affects your confidence. Kuldeep could be an option. He too has come back well from a down phase. But I still feel Chahal should get one more chance. He has that experience.”