Kolkata: An Ishan Kishan or a Shreyas Iyer may have been paid hefty sums to perform a particular role for their IPL sides but that won’t be up for consideration when skipper Rohit Sharma decides what’s best for India’s T20 team going into this year’s World Cup in Australia.

Back in 2011, the current India captain was one of the hottest mega auction picks for Mumbai Indians and he understands that the likes of Kishan (Rs 15.25 crore) or Shreyas Iyer (Rs 12.25 crore) must have gone through a plethora of emotions during the bidding frenzy involving them.

“It was understood that the guys will go through some emotions, some ups and downs,” the Indian skipper said on eve of the first T20 International against the West Indies here.

He said that now that auctions are over, focus will be on national duty and that’s something the team management has made clear to the players.

“Yesterday, we had a great meeting with everyone and asked them to focus on the colour ‘Blue’ for the next two weeks which is very, very important. Whatever has happened has happened and whichever team they are going to play, that’s for the future.

“Right now, the focus of next two weeks is to play for India. All these guys are professionals…nothing else matters,” the skipper was crystal clear.

Kishan opens for MI, ditto for Venkatesh Iyer (KKR), and Shreyas Iyer bats at No.3 or 4 for his franchise. Rohit said those positions won’t dictate the players’ slots in the national team.

“Honestly, there is no consideration of IPL here. We are not going to look at where they are going to bat in IPL. What matters is where they are going to bat for Team India, as simple as that,” the message was loud and clear.

The Indian team will follow its own playbook, which is not concerned about the dynamics at work in franchise cricket.

“These guys play different roles for their respective franchises but what we need here from these guys is very important. We will be focusing on that and not IPL. We will take care of the IPL later,” he explained.

Don’t want to talk about auctions

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The skipper didn’t like the discussion veering towards the big buys at the auction and he put the point across politely.

“I don’t want to talk about IPL here. It’s important we keep our focus on Team India rather than IPL,” he stressed.

“It’s played for only two months, whereas we play for India the next 10 months. It’s important that we keep our focus here at the moment.”

The IPL auction and its corresponding emotions are all done and dusted, at least for Rohit.

“Yes, guys were nervous and showing their emotions all around during the auction.

“But that’s done and dusted and no point talking about it now. We have important games coming up. we just need to focus on that.”

Focus on role clarity

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As he had said earlier also, players have been provided clarity on their roles.

“We are expecting that they develop the mindset to bat or bowl in that fashion come the World Cup,” Rohit added.

“The clarity is being given to them. it’s up to them how they take it forward and get the maximum out of their potential.” PTI KHS/TAP PM

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