Team India skipper Virat Kohli’s county stint ahead of the highly-awaited tour of England maybe curtailed after a BCCI official on Thursday confirmed that the 29-year-old batsman suffered a ‘neck sprain’ during his team’s final outing at the ongoing Indian Premier League. After Kohli paid a visit to a hospital recently, reports suggested that the Indian skipper is suffering from a slip disc injury. However, the official clarified that it is a case of a neck sprain. “Yes, Virat has had fatigue issues and this is a case of workload management rather than injury management. But it isn’t a case of slip disc. As of now, we will be monitoring his workload,” the senior official told PTI on condition of anonymity.
In the last 12 months, Virat Kohli has played all the 9 Tests for India. He also took part in 29 of the 32 One-Day Internationals and nine of the 18 T20Is played between May 2017 and June 2018, overall featuring in 47 of the 59 international games that India partook in. Only Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma (48 each) have played more matches for India than Kohli in this period.
Apart from this, Kohli also played 14 matches for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League over the last 6 weeks, the franchise which he also captains.
The official added that this injury may curtail Kohli’s county stint. “We are chalking a plan wherein his county stint will be curtailed. He will play two four-day matches as per the original plan and not the five Royal London Cup (50 over) matches,” he added. This means that the Indian skipper might be available for the upcoming ODI, T20 and Test series against England.
When India visited England the last time in 2014, Kohli didn’t have a great time and managed to score only 134 runs. He didn’t score a single half-century in the Test series.
To prepare for the tour and improve on his performance, Kohli had signed a contract with Surrey under which he was set to play three first-class and three list A matches, a plan that has gone kaput now. He was set to play the first match between June 9 and 12 against Hampshire at Ageas Bowl in Southampton followed by another away match against Somerset at Woodbridge Road in Guldford from 20-23 June.
The third and final county game was scheduled to be against Yorkshire from 25 June at Scarborough. This is the match where Kohli would have featured against his teammate – Cheteshwar Pujara.