Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli Unlikely To Be Selected For T20Is; Hardik Pandya To Be Long-term Captain: Sources

Two of India’s most celebrated cricketers – Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli – are unlikely to be selected for T20Is going forward, sources have told NDTV. The veteran duo have been the pillars of Indian cricket for more than a decade now but the game’s governing body in the country –  BCCI – is planning to induct young players in the T20I format looking ahead at the 2024 T20 World Cup in the USA and the West Indies. Sources have further told NDTV that Hardik Pandya will be a crucial cog in India’s T20I plans and is likely to be made the long-term captain in the shortest format.

The new BCCI selection committee, led by Chetan Sharma, which was appointed on January 7 is likely to hold talks with Virat and Rohit regarding their T20I future, sources said. They added that the star duo has made themselves available for selection in T20Is. “BCCI wants a young team under Hardik Pandya for T20Is,” sources said.

When Hardik Pandya was made the captain of the Indian T20I side for the recently-concluded three-match series against Sri Lanka, there was enough speculation that Rohit’s time as the T20I skipper may be close to an end. Both Rohit and Virat, a former India captain himself, were not part of the T20I squad against Sri Lanka while they were named in the ODI squad.

Rohit made his international debut in June, 2007 in ODIs. He played his first T20I is September that year. Virat, on the other hand, made his senior international debut in August, 2008 in an ODI match against Sri Lanka while he played his first T20I in June, 2010. Both have led India in T20 World Cups, but have not been able to win the marquee event as captains.

In the list of highest run-scorers in T20Is, Virat tops the chart with a tally of 4008 in 115 matches at an average of 52.73. Rohit is second on that list with 3853 runs in 148 matches at an average of 31.32.

On Monday, on the eve first ODI against Sri Lanka in Guwahati, Rohit, however, said that he is not giving up on the shortest format. “We have only six T20Is, three are over. So we’ll manage, you know to look after those boys till IPL. Then we’ll see what happens after the IPL. But certainly, I’ve not decided to give up the format,” Rohit said.

Rohit added that a new look team had played the T20Is against Sri Lanka due to workload management of some of the senior players. “If you look at the schedule, there were back-to-back matches, so we decided on just looking at some players’ workload that we wanted to make sure that they get enough break time and manage them. I definitely fall in that (category) as well,” Rohit said,

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