While Indian captain Virat Kohli is set to miss the last three Tests in the Australia tour, his childhood coach Rajkumar Sharma recently gave his view on the possible impact in the Indian Test team in Kohli’s absence.
India will restart their international cricket with the three-match ODI series against the hosts Australia on this Friday (27th November), and then they will quickly play another three-match T20I series. Then India will play the much-awaited four-match Test series in this Australia tour, which will run from 17th December 2020 to 19th January 2021.
Virat Kohli will lead the Indian team in the entire limited-overs series against the hosts Australia. But after the opening match in the four-match Test series in Adelaide, which will be the first day/night pink-ball Test encounter between Australia and India, Kohli will return in India due to the birth of his first child.
Virat Kohli will come back after the first Test, and it will be a big setback for the team: Rajkumar Sharma
Like many other cricket experts, Virat Kohli’s childhood coach Rajkumar Sharma also believes that Kohli’s return to India will be a big setback for his team.
Sharma told ANI, “It’s a very important series and we know both teams are very competitive, this series is very crucial and the world is looking forward to it. After a long time, competitive cricket will be seen and I feel it will be a good series to watch. Kohli will come back after the first Test and it will be a big setback for the team.”
Praising Kohli’s cricket and captaincy attitude, Sharma believes that the Indian team will miss him in the remaining three Tests in the Australia tour which will give a slight advantage to the hosts in that series. However, Sharma is still hopeful on the Indian Test side as he believes that the country has enough talented players.
Sharma continued, “Everyone knows the kind of record Virat has against Australia, he gives the team the desired momentum and he is a sort of captain who leads from the front. He is very focused and determined so I think the Indian team will miss these qualities against Australia. The hosts will have a slight advantage but I hope that the players who get an opportunity in the absence of Virat grab their chance as we have talented players on our side.”
In the absence of Virat Kohli, the Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane is likely to take the captaincy charge of the Indian team for the last three Tests of the Australia tour. While Rahane has led the Indian team in two home Tests till the date, India won both those matches.
Rajkumar Sharma praised Rahane, and he also believes that Rahane can be a good leader in Test cricket.
Sharma said, “Ajinkya Rahane is a very good player in Tests. He has a good record. He has good technique and he is a good leader. He will have a chance to establish himself as a captain.”
In the last Australia tour, which happened in 2018/19 summer, India drew the three-match bilateral T20I series (1-1) but won the three-match bilateral ODI series (won by 2-1) and four-match bilateral Test series (won by 2-1). It was the first time when India won the bilateral Test and ODI series in Australia.