cricket Sports

Virat Kohli’s form: Kapil’s comment, Rohit’s defence, India’s worry

Rohit Sharma rejected Kapil Dev’s opinion of dropping Kohli by saying, “He is watching the game from the outside and does not know what is happening inside.”

Batting legends in poor form get all the comments. India captain  has defended his teammate  after the legendary  suggested that the batsman be dropped.

Kohli has 70 centuries in all forms of the game but he has not scored any for the last three years. His last top score was 94 not out in December 2019 in a T20I match against West Indies.

“Now the situation is such that you might be forced to bench Kohli from the T20 playing eleven. He will have to perform better. If world No. 2 bowler Ashwin (Ravichandran) can be dropped from Test side, then [the] world No. 1 batter can also be dropped,” said Dev, India’s 1993 World Cup-winning captain, three days ago.

Sharma rejected his opinion. “He is watching the game from the outside and does not know what is happening inside. We have our thought processes. We build our team and behind this, there is a lot of thinking,” Sharma said on Sunday. “We should not overlook his (Kohli’s) past performances.”

Deepak Hooda, who hit a century against Ireland in the T20I match on Sunday, sat out two matches of the series against England because Kohli had to be accommodated in the playing 11.

Cricket fans at one point expected Kohli to surpass India’s Sachin Tendulkar, the highest run-scorer with 100 centuries. Kohli’s fans put him alongside greats like Tendulkar, Sir Vivian Richards, Ricky Ponting and Brian Lara. The four men had lean patches, too, but not as long as Kohli has been going through.

West Indies’ Richards found his top form only in 1981 and after that he didn’t have any year where he averaged below 35. The exception was in 1990 when his Test average was 28.30. In 1991, he played his last Test.

In 2006, Tendulkar was regarded to be past his prime. He was struggling with injuries and form. Then he made a comeback so strong in 2007 that he scored 776 Test runs at an average of 55. The only time Tendulkar failed to score a century two years consecutively was in 2012 and 2013, the last two years of his career.

Lara, one of the greatest West Indies cricketers, never went two years without scoring a century ever since 1993 till his last Test in 2016. Australia’s Ponting too never went two years in a row without a Test century ever since he got his first century in 1997 till his last year in Test cricket in 2012.

Thus, even in the league of legends, Kohli is now standing where no one has, three years, without an international century. The 33-year-old Delhi born has so far not hit a century in 32 Test, 18 ODI, 21 T20I and 46 IPL innings. In total, he is without a century since 117 innings, which is a huge failure by any stretch of the imagination.

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