Team India head coach Rahul Dravid has thrown weight behind Virat Kohli, who has had a dismal form in recent times, ahead of the rescheduled fifth Test against England, starting on July 1 at Edgbaston in Birmingham. The former India captain has gone without scoring a century in almost 30 months. His last hundred came against Bangladesh in November 2019 at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
The talismanic run-scorer also endured poor form in the IPL, playing for the Royal Challengers Bangalore. There were talks about resting him in a bid to get the rhythm back. Hence, he was left out of the squad for the five-match T20Is against South Africa.
He played the four-day warm-up game against Leicestershire and looked in decent touch, timing the ball from the middle of the bat. While there has been a lot of debates about Virat Kohli’s form, Rahul Dravid has insisted that he only wants match-winning contributions from the batter.
“I kind of disagree with you when you say he is in the wrong side of 30. He is probably in my opinion on the right side of 30,” Dravid said while talking to reporters.
“From a coach’s perspective, we only want contributions from him, we want match-winning contributions for him, whether that’s a 50, that’s a 60 on a wicket like that. Maybe tomorrow’s wicket, may be a 60 or a 70 could end up being a match-winning performance or it may not, we might need a big score for him,” he added.
He is ticking the right boxes – Rahul Dravid on Virat Kohli
Dravid further asserted that Kohli has looked determined in the training session, playing the best bowlers in the nets. Kohli, who has compiled 315 runs in the first four matches, will look to make a winning contributions in the Birmingham Test.
“He was keen on batting against Bumrah and all of these guys. So, I think he is ticking all the right boxes. He is doing what he needs to do to sort of come out of it,” Dravid added.