Frequent injuries to players a major concern as injured Rohit Sharma set for early return home

Dhaka, Dec 8 (IANS) Injuries are part of the game of cricket and players keep falling prey to various injuries — from minor niggles to serious problems — while representing their respective countries in international cricket.

Australia will go into the second Test against West Indies at Adelaide on Thursday without skipper Pat Cummins and pacer Josh Hazlewood while West Indies too are expecting a few players unavailable for selection.

India will play the inconsequential third and final One-day International against Bangladesh without the injured skipper Rohit Sharma, who hurt his thumb in the second ODI, and will fly to Mumbai to consult an expert.

The skipper copped an injury to his finger in the second over of Bangladesh’s batting innings while attempting a catch. The ball hit his thumb and he was seen bleeding as he walked off. He didn’t come out to open the innings as well, with Virat Kohli replacing him as Shikhar Dhawan’s partner at the top. Bangladesh edged past India by 5 runs in the second match to secure the ODI series.

“Rohit will certainly miss the next game, fly back to Bombay, consult with an expert and see how it is and whether he can come back for the Test matches or not. I’m not sure. It’s too soon to say that (he’ll be fit for the Tests or not),” Dravid said in the post-match press conference.

Meanwhile, Deepak Chahar, who only bowled three overs in the second ODI in Dhaka, was also ruled out of the final ODI as was Kuldeep Sen, who missed the match on Wednesday. “All three of them won’t play the next game for sure,” Dravid said.

Though coach Rahul Dravid presented a calm facade despite the setback, Rohit Sharma expressed his disappointment over the frequent injuries.

In a conversation with former cricketer Anjum Chopra, Rohit spoke at length about players sustaining injuries after clearing fitness tests at the National Cricket Academy (NCA).

“I mean there are definitely a few injury concerns. We need to try and get to the bottom of it. I don’t know what exactly it is. Maybe they’re playing too much cricket. We need to try and monitor those guys because it’s important to understand when they come for India, they need to be 100%, in fact, more than 100%,” Rohit said after the second ODI on Wednesday.

Injuries to key players have plagued India for the last many months with Jasprit Bumrah, Deepak Chahar, and Washington Sunder missing matches due to injuries. Allrounder Ravindra Jadeja is also missing games because of an injury.

Currently, the senior India players have to report to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) for rehabilitation and get fitness clearance from the NCA experts before joining the squad. But with players falling victim to injuries soon after being cleared by NCA, Rohit Sharma felt they need to take a serious look into the problem.

“It’s something we have to look at,” Rohit said. “We have to sit with our team back home at the NCA as well and try and monitor their workload. That is something we need to look at. We can’t afford guys coming in here half-fit and representing the country. There’s huge pride and honour in representing the country and if they’re not fit enough, it’s not ideal. Having said that, we just need to get to the bottom of it and find out what exactly is the reason behind this,” he said after the second ODI.

Rohit has raised some pertinent questions and now it is time for the BCCI to go into the issue and find a solution. With the 50-overs World Cup next year and with the team’s usual commitments, 2023 will be a busy year for the players.



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