Less than a week after vanquishing Bangladesh, the Men in Blue trooped into the Adelaide Oval for a session of optional-nets. If the previous visit was about coping with the cold weather and its damp streaks, the latest one was all about basking in near tropical warmth but without the humidity.
The skies were a glorious blue on Tuesday morning. There was birdsong in the air and the sun a bright orb dispensing blinding light, all hinting at a summer finally easing into the Australian landmass. The temperature inched to 31 degrees but out in the practice square there was a moment that was nearly darkness at noon as Rohit Sharma winced in pain after being struck above the right wrist while countering throw-downs.
The skipper opted out of his batting drills, rested a bit and iced the injured spot. Thankfully for the Indian unit, he returned after a while and picked up his willow. Nerves eased within the ranks as he gradually warmed up, essaying shots and finding his feet. With the ICC Twenty20 World Cup semifinal against England here on Thursday, India needs its captain to be at his best.
So far Rohit has had a mixed bag in this championship, often perishing on the pull-shot, which is also his preferred stroke besides the massive sixes down the ground. Scores of 4, 53, 15, 2 and 15 don’t reflect his innate class and this drought by Rohit’s standards has been masked by the runs that Virat Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav have yielded while India progressed towards the last-four stage.
While the captain put the niggle behind him and trained, Dinesh Karthik had a hit in the nets. It remains to be seen if the management would look at bolstering its batting with perhaps Karthik or Deepak Hooda stepping in for Axar Patel or may be swap the spinner with Yuzvendra Chahal.