Rohit to lead India as Kohli is rested for Asia Cup being staged in UAE

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Indian skipper Virat Kohli has been rested for the Asia Cup starting on September 15, with fellow batsman Rohit Sharma set to lead the team in the 50-over tournament in the United Arab Emirates, the country’s cricket board announced on Saturday.

Kohli recently overcame a back problem that had troubled him during the second test of their ongoing five-match series against England. He also missed a stint with English county championship side Surrey before the tour due to a neck injury.

“The (all-India senior selection) committee in consultation with the team management took a unanimous decision to rest Virat Kohli for the tournament” the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said in a statement.

“Rohit Sharma will lead the side while Shikhar Dhawan has been named vice-captain.”

Despite his injury issues amid a heavy workload, Kohli has excelled in England scoring two centuries in the test series.

After losing the first two tests, India sealed a 203-run win in the third match to cut England’s lead to 2-1 and are confident of levelling the series in Southampton where the fourth test was going into its third day on Saturday.

India begin the defense of their Asia Cup crown on September 18 with a match against a qualifying team. They play arch-rivals Pakistan the following day.

India squad for Asia Cup: Rohit Sharma (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Lokesh Rahul, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur, Khaleel Ahmed.