Where's Rohit Sharma? Virat Kohli's new 'squad' picture gives ammunition to fans
The Indian cricket team is in the US for upcoming three-match T20I series against West Indies.
The picture shows Ravindra Jadeja, Navdeep Saini, Khaleel Ahmed, Shreyas Iyer, Krunal Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and KL Rahul posing alongside the 30-year-old cricketer who are in the US for the upcoming three-match T20I series against West Indies starting tomorrow. But, vice-captain Rohit Sharma's absence from the image fuelled further speculation about the rift between the two cricketers.
SQUAD https://t.co/2uBjgiPjIa— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) 1564713776000
While addressing the pre-tour media conference ahead of the West Indies tour, Kohli said that the speculations were disrespectful. "It is baffling to read (reports of an alleged rift). We are feeding off lies, overlooking facts & turning a blind eye to all the good things that have happened," he added.
It is baffling to read (reports of an alleged rift). We are feeding off lies, overlooking facts & turning a blind e… https://t.co/Jdnd5TVeYN— BCCI (@BCCI) 1564407086000
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had shared bits from press conference on Twitter, where Kholi emphasised that the two have no issues, and are working towards getting Indian cricket to the top.
I have praised @ImRo45 whenever I have had an opportunity because he has been that good. We have had no issues. We… https://t.co/ueEVfRKF58— BCCI (@BCCI) 1564408732000
Many fans sought answers from the cricketer about the absence of India vice-captain. While some followers accused Kohli of playing politics, others touted the 'legend' Rohit. Many fans attempted making jokes on the matter.
@imVkohli Hey @imVkohli if everything is alright with in your team and dressing room, why every time you post a pic… https://t.co/if4xgZyxn3— Gaurav Varmani (@gauravvarmani) 1564715898000
@imVkohli One man army Rohit > Squad— R E B E L (@GadhviLaxman) 1564718371000
@imVkohli where is @ImRo45 Y u r doing politics @BCCI after Graig chapel virat ND shashtri will be responsible for… https://t.co/jRPYkP0fRO— silent (@jiteshkumar114) 1564714230000
@imVkohli ye le! instagram pe wapas se follow kar varna mere squad se bahar! https://t.co/XGlaeTZ9yH— Keh Ke Peheno (@coolfunnytshirt) 1564732535000
Earlier before the departure for the West Indies tour, Rohit had also posted a photo on Instagram which said: "I don't just walk out for my Team. I walk out for my country."
I don’t just walk out for my Team. I walk out for my country. https://t.co/S4RFkC0pSk— Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) 1564585161000
Ever since India's exit from the World Cup in the semifinals, there have been rumours about a rift between Kohli and Rohit. However, both Kohli and head coach Ravi Shastri have denied the reports with the India captain terming the rumours "baffling".
Rohit doesn't follow Kohli on Instagram and recently he unfollowed Anushka Sharma - wife of India skipper - which added fuel to the rift rumours.
However, Kohli still follows Rohit on the picture-sharing website, but not his wife Ritika Sajdeh.
Anushka also doesn't follow either Ritika or Rohit on Instagram. Ritika too, doesn't follow the Indian skipper and his wife.
The 'squad' picture has been retweeted around 3500 times and liked by over 66,000 people.