Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah (Image Credit: Twitter)

The likelihood that Rohit Sharma would captain India against England in the Edgbaston Test has been severely harmed by his inability to recuperate from the Covid-19 infection he picked up during a warm-up game in Leicester last week.

The skipper is still not ruled out, but national selectors and team management have chosen to wait until the very last moment, according to an earlier report by Cricbuzz. However, that is more motivated by hope than by conviction. 

Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah. Image Credits: BCCI

Rohit Sharma In Isolation

Rohit has been in permanent isolation since testing positive last Saturday (June 25), and every RT PCR test that has been done on him subsequently has come up positive.

In actuality, Rohit did not board the team’s Monday flight from Leicester to Birmingham (June 27). Separately, he travelled to Warwickshire city. Even on Wednesday (June 29), he failed a test, leaving the team administration and selectors considering their options. 

Indian skipper Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma Image Source: Twitter

In the event that Rohit fails the fitness test once more on Thursday morning (June 30), Jasprit Bumrah would likely take over as captain. If it happens, Bumrah will be the team’s first pacer since Kapil Dev to be granted command. R Ashwin and Rishabh Pant’s names were also mentioned, but they fell short in the end.

Given his recent Covid-19 past, the former is a questionable starter for the Test, while the latter is ineligible due to his previous unimpressive captaincy record. In addition, Bumrah is the natural candidate in the current situation due to his extensive international expertise. 

Rohit Sharma Not Ruled Out Of Indian Team Yet

On the eve of the game, Rahul Dravid bravely said in front of the media on Wednesday night that the medical staff wanted to have one more look at the captain.

“Rohit is being monitored by the medical team. He is not yet ruled out. Obviously, he needs to get the negative tests before being available. So, he will have a test tonight and one maybe tomorrow morning as well and then we will see.”  

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma Image Source: Twitter

Additionally, the India coach would not say if Bumrah would be the obvious pick to lead the team. “It is probably better if the communication comes from official sources. I am not sure where Chetan (Sharma, the chief selector) is, but once we have the exact clarity on Rohit, you will hear from the official sources.

It’s not for me to give out official communication,” he said, adding, “It’s up to the medical team and the sports science team to decide. I haven’t had a chance to see him since he is in quarantine and isolation. We will keep monitoring the situation.”  

For the record, after KL Rahul withdrew due to a groin ailment, the selectors did not pick a vice-captain for the series. In addition to the captaincy conundrum, the Indian team must choose which the second opener would join Shubman Gill. Mayank Agarwal and KS Bharat are two options, with the former having the advantage. 

The five-game series, which includes the fifth and final test on July 1–5, was prematurely ended last year due to a wave of Covid-19 cases among the Indian team. India is up 2-1 in the series. 

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