“Virat Kohli was in such good form during the World Cup” - Saba Karim questions decision to rest seniors for New Zealand tour 

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Team India batter Virat Kohli during the T20 World Cup 2022. Pic: Getty Images

Former India keeper-batter Saba Karim has questioned the constant rest being given to senior players. According to him, there was no need for Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul to skip the New Zealand tour.

After a second-string Indian team lost the one-day series to the Kiwis, a full-strength Indian team has now gone down to Bangladesh in the ongoing series. The Men in Blue were beaten by five runs in the second ODI on Wednesday (December 7) as Bangladesh took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.

Karim opined that resting key players frequently affects their form and momentum and causes harm to the team in the long run. Speaking during a discussion on India News, he said:

“Virat Kohli was in such good form during the World Cup. He was not taken to New Zealand. Rohit Sharma also did not tour New Zealand, neither did KL Rahul. All three came back here (Bangladesh tour), but you need some time to find form again. Shreyas Iyer is the only one who has been playing ODIs regularly, and he is also the only one who has been scoring consistently,” he added.

According to Karim, the kind of selections that have been made lately also suggest a lot of confusion in the Indian camp. He elaborated:

“There is just too much confusion. The players that should be backed are not being backed. If a player comes back to form, he is given rest. Players who are not in form end up getting a chance to play.”

Despite being in a winning position in both one-dayers against Bangladesh, Team India lost the first game by a wicket and the second by five runs.

“The target that was set should have been chased down easily” - Saba Karim on Team India’s loss in 2nd ODI

Sharing his thoughts on India’s narrow defeat in the second ODI, Karim said that the Men in Blue should have chased down the below-par target of 272. India allowed Bangladesh to recover from 69/6 to reach 271-7.

However, according to the former selector, there was no reason for India not to overhaul that total. He said:

“The target that was set should have been chased down easily in 50-over cricket. We talk about chasing 300-325. But if we can’t chase 272 and that too against Bangladesh, then things are only going to get tougher for India going ahead.”

Having lost the second ODI, India will now take on Bangladesh in a dead rubber in Chattogram on Saturday (December 10).

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Edited by Renin Wilben Albert
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