IND vs AFG, 1st T20I: Virat Kohli to miss Mohali clash due to personal reasons, confirms coach Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid has announced that Virat Kohli's will be missing in the upcoming first T20I against West Indies due to personal reasons.
Virat Kohli has decided to skip the first T20I against Afghanistan for personal reasons, as confirmed by Rahul Dravid.
Star Indian batsman, Virat Kohli, will be absent from the opening T20I of the series against Afghanistan, commencing on January 11. The prolific batsman, who recently returned to the T20I squad after a prolonged absence, will sit out the match due to personal reasons, as stated by head coach Rahul Dravid during a pre-match press conference on Wednesday. Kohli's last T20I appearance was in the 2022 T20 World Cup semi-finals against England. In addition to Kohli's absence, Rohit Sharma, who has also returned to the squad, is expected to lead the team in the inaugural match in Mohali.
Speculation surrounded the return of this star duo to the squad, drawing criticism from some fans who favored the emergence of several young talents in their positions. Over the past year, promising batters such as Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, and Ruturaj Gaikwad have made strong impressions in the top order. Meanwhile, Tilak Varma and Rinku Singh delivered noteworthy performances in the middle order.
Despite the emergence of these young talents, the senior duo was entrusted with a place in the squad, especially with the T20 World Cup looming in June. The absence of Hardik Pandya and Suryakumar Yadav due to injuries further influenced the decision. Kohli showcased his batting prowess by securing the fourth position among the leading run-scorers in the previous IPL season, accumulating 639 runs in 14 matches. Moreover, he topped the charts as the highest run-getter in the preceding T20 World Cup.
Additionally, the Indian Head Coach announced that skipper Rohit Sharma, along with Yashasvi Jaiswal, will open the innings in the 1st T20I.
Rohit Sharma (C), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Shivam Dube, Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar
Ibrahim Zadran (C), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (WK), Ikram Alikhil (WK), Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi, Karim Janat, Azmatullah Omarzai, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Fareed Ahmad, Naveen Ul Haq, Noor Ahmad, Mohammad Saleem, Qais Ahmad, Gulbadin Naib and Rashid Khan.