Will take a break when needed, says Kohli

Skipper defends policy of resting players differently

Will take a break when needed, says Kohli

After giving some players break from cricket and allowing a few to take rest, Virat Kohli said he will also need some breather from non-stop cricket as he was also a human being and not a "robot".

When asked if Kohli, easily the most overworked Indian cricketer this year, needs rest, the skipper said, "Definitely."      

"I do need rest! Why don't I need rest? When I think my body should be rested, I'll ask for it. I'm not a robot. You can slice my skin and check, I bleed," he remarked even as he explained the criteria applied while resting particular players.

"People just look at, 'Oh everyone has played 40 games'," he began. "They don't look at the time spent on the crease, the number of runs that have been run in between, the number of overs they've been bowling in difficult conditions -- what were the conditions like, what was the temperature like, have the bodies recovered or not. I don't think people go into that analysis. So from the outside, it looks like 'why are people asking for rest, everyone played same number of games', but not everyone has the same kind of workload in every game that they play.  

"For example, Pujara, during the Test season, he will have maximum workload. Because he spends so much time at the crease. His game is built that way. You can't compare that to a counter-attacking batsman because the workload would have been lesser," he explained.

It was an indirect shot at Sourav Ganguly who had expressed his surprise over resting Hardik Pandya. Ganguly felt that the all-rounder hadn't played enough cricket to be given a break.

Kohli also agreed that international schedule should be drawn in such a way that people don't feel overdose of the same. The statement is particularly significant in the context of India-Sri Lanka series both of whom were involved in a nine-match series across formats just a couple of months ago. The two teams are set to contest in the same number of matches with the games spread equally in all three formats.

"I don't know. I think this analysis has to be done over a period of time by asking fans who watch the game," he felt when asked if there has been an overkill of the same. "As cricketers, someone watching the game is very different to someone being involved in the game. For us, there's no room for complacency, saying 'I don't want to play this game' or standing at the crease with  bat in hand and saying, 'I don't feel like batting'.

"There's no room for that because you're going to get out and the team is going to lose. I don't know if there's too much cricket being played or a repetition  of the same series. We do what we are presented with.  This analysis can be done. It definitely has to be taken into consideration because you don't want fans going away from the game. We have to maintain a balance of how to engage fans and how to keep players fresh and at the same time keep cricket exciting and have very competitive cricket happening throughout the year."

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