Where will Kohli bat in the World Cup, said Rohit
Virat Kohli opens regularly in IPL. However, now he has to play three times in T20 for India. Kohli opened the innings in place of the rested Rohit Sharma in the last match of the Asia Cup, for the first time since March 2021. In that match, the former India captain broke a drought of almost three years and scored a century. Since then, the discussion has started – in which position will Kohli bat in the World Cup?
Before that match against Afghanistan, it was Lokesh Rahul who returned from injury to open the Asia Cup with captain Rohit Sharma. This pair will also be seen in the World Cup. However, India is thinking of Kohli as an alternative opener in the team, he will also be seen to rise in some matches, said captain Rohit. However, Rahul is their first choice as an opener, he also informed that.
India is playing a three-match T20I series against Australia at home. In a press conference ahead of the first match in Mohali on September 20, Rohit said, ‘Rahul (head coach Rahul Dravid) has spoken with his brother, we will open with Virat in some matches. Because, he is our third opener. We saw that in the last match. We are happy with what we have seen. However, I don’t think I will experiment much with this position.
The Indian captain also explained why not to do it, ‘When you do something new, you have to do it carefully, it is not like that for us. We understand the value of all players, how they are to us. But it is an option for us. Since no third opener has been taken, we have it in our mind that he (Kohli) can open. He opened for his franchise, and did well.
Rahul, who returned to the team after a long absence from injury, was not in good form at the start of the Asia Cup. However, he got a fifty in that match against Afghanistan. However, Rohit said that the team management has no doubts about Rahul, “In my opinion, KL Rahul will play and open the World Cup. Why his performance for India at times is not appreciated enough. He is a very important player for India. You will see his record in the last two-three years very well.
Rahul has opened in 43 out of 57 innings in international T-20. There are also two innings of 91 and 89 out of 16 half-centuries. Neither of his two T20 centuries came as an opener. One bats at number 4, another at number 3.
Rahul is the first choice as the second opener. However, Rohit also said that having Kohli as an alternative will be useful in the World Cup, ‘It is always good to have an alternative. It is also important in tournaments like the World Cup. You will want to do a little bit here and there.’
Rohit also declared that Rahul’s batting position will not change for the performance of Kohli or anyone else, “Don’t take the performance of one person into account because of the performance of another, I don’t think it is right. Just want to make this clear to everyone. There is no doubt about it. We have a clear idea of what KL (Rahul) gives us. He is a very, very important and quality player, a match winner too. His presence at the top is very, very important for us.’
Lokesh Rahul must have calmed down after hearing Rohit Sharma’s words. Kohli’s century came at the press conference after that match against Afghanistan. When a journalist asked whether Virat Kohli will open the World Cup or not, Lokesh Rahul replied a bit annoyed, ‘What does that mean? Shall I sit outside?’