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I'm very clear as to how I want to take this forward - Rohit on being all-format


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Chetan Sharma, the chairman of the selection panel recently announced Rohit Sharma as the captain for all formats although he was non-committal about how long he would stay as skipper, reflecting on the need for workload management. While calling him the No. 1 cricketer in the country, the chief selector spoke about the need to manage Rohit.

Having taken over the T20I reins from Virat Kohli, Rohit was also named the ODI captain but injury forced him to miss the tour of South Africa. With the Test captaincy also being given to him, along with captaining Mumbai Indians in the IPL which is now a ten-team affair with more matches, Rohit has the work cut out for him in the near future.

The 34-year-old, however, was clear with his plans for captaining in all three formats and how to balance it. "I'm very clear in my mind as to how I want to take this forward," said Rohit at the press conference ahead of the T20I series against Sri Lanka. "Obviously managing the workload, not just me but everyone, will be the key moving forward. We've already seen a lot of injuries within our squad. So we just have to be very careful as to what we do with individuals and how we rotate them, how we give them that break time from the game. We're trying to manage that, we are trying to put a roadmap on the sidelines as to how we want to move forward.

Speaking about his fitness, Rohit added: "As far as I'm concerned, at the moment there are no issues. I'm looking forward to playing all the games. Workload always depends on what happens thereafter, you take it day by day and understand what you need to do. If there's an opportunity for you to take a break, you'll take a break and see the other guys who fill in, what sort of potential he has," he added.

The chief selector had also spoken about how having Rohit as all formats captain would help in grooming some of his team-mates in leadership roles. KL Rahul was seen captaining the Indian team in South Africa, filling in for Kohli in one Test as well as leading the ODI side in the absence of Rohit. Jasprit Bumrah was named the vice-captain for the first time for the ODI series in South Africa and having been given a break for the West Indies T20Is, he will serve as Rohit's deputy for both the T20I and the Test series against Sri Lanka.

"I won't have that much of a role of telling them each and everything. Obviously, they all are mature cricketers. But it's just that someone needs to be there to help them, guide them in difficult situations. I'll be more than happy to do that. That is how we've grown up, come into the ranks of becoming the captain. We were groomed by someone else. So it's a natural process. If you talk of Bumrah, KL, [Rishabh] Pant, all these guys have a big role to play in India's success. At the same time, they are looked upon as the leaders as well. So they do understand what they need to do as individuals and at the same time they do understand there is a responsibility on their shoulders. But again we don't want to put any pressure on these guys, they are very critical to us. We just want them to enjoy the game, come out freely and execute your skills.

Speaking about Bumrah in the vice-captaincy role, Rohit added: "Honestly, it doesn't really matter too much whether it's a batter or a bowler being the vice-captain. It's the mind that matters to the individual. I think Jasprit Bumrah has a great mind for the game, I've seen it closely. Yes, it's a good way for him to step into the leadership role now. He's obviously taken his game to the next level, I'm sure he wants to continue to do that even further. This is going to add and get him more confident in whatever he wants to do on the field. It's nice to have him as the vice-captain of the team in this particular series. Let's hope everything works out pretty well. I know him closely, I talk to him a lot about cricket and I do understand what sort of cricketing brain he has. So it's nice to have him there in that role."

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