Cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra said the Asia Cup 2022 will be crucial for senior Indian batter Virat Kohli to overcome a lack of runs.
Kohli’s lean patch with the bat has been in the limelight since the time he relinquished Indian team captaincy from all formats.
Will the recent break from international cricket help Virat Kohli?
Kohli scored 11 and 20 in the rescheduled fifth Test against England, which India lost by seven wickets and levelled the series 2-2. He was rested for the first T20I but returned with scores of 1 and 10 in the next two games.
Nothing changed in the ODI leg as the 33-year-old managed 16 and 17 in the last two matches after missing the first due to a groin injury.
Midway through the England tour, it was reported that the Indian selectors will decide Kohli’s place in the T20 World Cup based on his form in the white-ball leg. Indian skipper Rohit Sharma had a different stance on the matter and he backed the senior batter in a tough time.
Kohli was rested for the West Indies ODI series by the Indian cricket board along with other senior players. The senior Indian player opted out of the West Indies T20Is and the ongoing One-Day series against Zimbabwe.
Virat Kohli has not played that much international cricket since T20 World Cup 2021: Aakash Chopra
Chopra highlighted the fact that Kohli hasn’t played enough T20 International matches since T20 World Cup 2021 and will need to score big runs to cement his place in the Indian side.
“As far as his (Virat Kohli) place in the Indian team is concerned, that question does not arise as of now. But there is no hiding from the fact that he needs to score runs.
“He has not played that much international cricket since the T20 World Cup last year. He has played just four T20Is since then,” Chopra said on Star Sports.
“He is a phenomenal player, perhaps one of the best the world has ever seen, but there comes a point where runs, contributions, and role play come into the picture.
“If you’re batting at no. 3 for India, it doesn’t matter who it is, you have to score runs. If you’re talking about team philosophy, with that perspective and keeping the upcoming T20 World Cup in mind, this Asia Cup after a long break will be crucial for Virat Kohli,” he added.
Kohli is part of India’s Asia Cup title defence and his performance in the continental tournament moreover gives a blueprint for India’s T20 World Cup selection.