IPL 2017: Virat Kohli availability to be known by mid-April

Virat Kohli reacts after he was injured while fielding during Day One of the third Test against Australia in Ranchi on March 16. Pic/AFP

New Delhi: India captain Virat Kohli's availability for IPL-10 will be known only in the second week of this month as he undergoes rehabilitation for an injured shoulder, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said on Saturday.

Updating the fitness status of Indian players, who took part in the just-concluded home Test series against Australia, the BCCI said Kohli will undergo rehabilitation for the injury sustained during the Ranchi Test. "The Indian captain will undergo rehabilitation after sustaining an injury to his right shoulder. His recovery will be assessed in the second week of April to determine an exact return to play date for IPL 2017," the BCCI said in a release.

Gruelling home seasonA host of top Indian players will either miss the IPL or be rested from some initial matches of the cash-rich event. These players will need some rest after a gruelling home season to be fully fit for the Champions Trophy coming up in England in June. India are defending the title they won in 2013.

Premier India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who was set to represent Rising Pune Supergiant, will not be available for the entire IPL due to recurrence of sports hernia while Test openers Murali Vijay (last year's captain of Kings XI Punjab) and Lokesh Rahul (RCB) are also virtually ruled out due to imminent shoulder surgeries.

The BCCI medical team said Ashwin will miss the entire IPL as he has been advised six to eight weeks of rehabilitation to recuperate from his groin pain. A 100 per cent fit Ashwin is a must for India in the upcoming Champions Trophy from June 1 and playing 14 matches with little gap and lot of travelling would have only aggravated his problem.

Unbelievable workloadThe 30-year-old all-rounder has featured in all the 13 home Test matches this season. He has had an unbelievable workload of bowling a staggering 738.2 overs in which, he has taken an astounding 82 wickets. It is the highest by any Indian bowler in a season, contributing handsomely in bulk of India's 10 Test victories.

Regarding Rahul and Vijay, the BCCI said, "Rahul is likely to undergo surgery of his left shoulder and Vijay will require surgery to his right wrist and also undergo rehabilitation for his left shoulder so they may not be available for the entire IPL 2017 season."

Time to freshen up Kolkata Knight Riders pacer Umesh Yadav and Gujarat Lions' biggest draw Ravindra Jadeja have been given some time to freshen up and will not be available for their respective franchises in the first couple of matches. "Jadeja has issues with the spinning finger and Umesh has right hip and lower back soreness and they will recover when their teams will play their first and second match."

Jadeja has also sent down a lot of overs in this home season. He has bowled no less than 717.2 overs, getting 71 wickets. Fast bowler Umesh has bowled 355.5 overs in 12 games with 30 wickets to his name. One has to take into account that Umesh's overs were bowled in Indian conditions where the wickets were not exactly conducive to fast bowling. However, Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma, who is expected to be picked for the Champions Trophy, and his teammate Hardik Pandya, have been cleared to play the full season.

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