India loves Virat Kohli and so does world cricket. Each move and decision of Virat Kohli is regarded and reviled in equal measure. In fact, cricket obsesses about him. Whatever this spectacular cricketer does is marked with close scrutiny. Therefore, it’s not hard to note that in the immediate aftermath of Kohli deciding to skip the Afghanistan Test, the decision was hugely opined.
At present, it seems that there’s this tug of verbal war between those who regard his decision to focus on his Surrey commitment important and those who are questioning his commitment for national cricket. After all, Virat Kohli in Surrey means non-availability of no one else but the Indian cricket captain for the Afghanistan Test.
Chances are, by this time, you’ve made your choice in a Virat Kohli fashion.
But what remains to be seen is whether both- those who are by Kohli’s side and those against him- have rationally ascertained reasons behind his choice?
Why should the world’s leading batsman (considering Root is out of form and Smith unavailable for an year) one who’s accustomed to ball-bashing on flat sub-continental decks attempt to acquaint himself with turning tracks in England is something that should not give fans sleepless nights. The equation is pretty simple and Kohli’s logic promotes soundness of thinking, being fair to his decision.
Next year, India begin their ICC 2019 World Cup challenge. The last when India lifted the world cup was at a time where Sachin was still around, the bulk of the team’s scoring was done by the likes of Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh with the domineering batsman offering exciting cameos.
Today, the situation has changed with Virat Kohli at the helm of the affairs.
Not only is he the world’s most fluent run scorer, on current form, but is rather the leader of arguably the most followed outfit alongside South Africa and Australia. But there’s hardly any practice or chances he gets playing on pitches and tracks that are as similar to India’s wickets.
Turning tracks and green pastures, bouncy wickets assisting spin- these could be nightmare scenarios for batsmen unaccustomed to any familiarity. Kohli wants to solve this complex maze come the next year’s world cup, which is lurking around the corner.
Why then should Virat Kohli not commit himself to batting on probing wickets is something that beats the mind? But surely not of fervent admirers who’d rather want him to forgo the long-term advantage and play home.
Will Virat Kohli be missed against Afghanistan?
Truth be told, yes and no. While at first thoughts, the equation of there being no Virat Kohli in the June Test cuts to pieces the mouth-watering prospect of seeing him battle against Rashid Khan, you understand that what he’s missing isn’t a string of games.
Rather, Kohli has opted to galvanize his strengths in England that will come in handy over the chance of bettering spin in a one-off Test.
For the lack of better word, purely five days of Test cricket is quite a no-brainer.
Regardless, there are other top-notch marksmen in the team who’ve shown great form and technique in the home season. Among them is Cheteshwar Pujara. Should a KL Rahul play alongside, the prospect becomes even brighter.
Can’t Indian cricket afford to miss Kohli for 5 days when the bigger gain, on the other hand, is a stint with a county team like Surrey, that too in English conditions?