‘Biggest load of rubbish I’ve ever heard in my life’: Ex-cricketer on ‘question mark’ over Virat Kohli’s place in T20 World Cup team | Ipl News

Royal Challengers Bangalore player Virat Kohli during a training session ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 cricket tournament, at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru, Monday, March 18, 2024. (PTI Photo)

Virat Kohli’s place in the Indian cricket team for the T20 World Cup has been a topic of much debate for the past few months now.

While it has been pointed out that having Kohli and Rohit Sharma in the side will go against India’s T20 blueprint, Kohli’s numbers in the format speak for themselves: the prolific batter has only had three seasons in the IPL where he hasn’t at least aggregated 400 runs. Of the 109 times Kohli has batted for India in T20 Internationals, India have won on 70 occasions. In those outings, he has scored 2828 runs at 67.33; 15 times he was the man of the match. He is still the unparalleled chase-master. He averages 71.85 when chasing, with a healthy strike rate of 137.


Royal Challengers Bengaluru batter Virat Kohli plays a shot during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 T20 cricket match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Punjab Kings at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, in Bengaluru Royal Challengers Bengaluru batter Virat Kohli plays a shot during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 T20 cricket match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Punjab Kings at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, in Bengaluru. (PTI)

These numbers show that Kohli could make it into the Indian team by his batting chops alone, rather than just being included to “popularise the game in USA” as former England player Kevin Pietersen had recently suggested.

Another former cricketer has now weighed in on Kohli’s spot in Team India for the T20 World Cup.

“I can’t understand why, every time there’s an ICC event coming up in any format, people always talk about Virat Kohli. Is he under any pressure for his spot? That is the biggest load of rubbish I’ve ever heard in my life. He’s the greatest player that I have ever seen in white ball cricket. It doesn’t matter that he strikes it at 140 and there are guys whose strike rates are in 160. If I’m picking a team, you’re picking a guy who you know day in day out gets the job done in bog games. Just ludicrous that we keep having this conversation!” Finch said on Around The Wicket.

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Kohli takes exception to ‘popularising game’ comment

The Indian team think tank is facing a problem of plenty going into the T20 World Cup, with players like Ruturaj Gaikwad, Suryakumar Yadav, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Shreyas Iyer, Hardik Pandya, Rinku Singh, Tilak Varma, Ishan Kishan, Jitesh Sharma and Sanju Samson all more than capable of playing the way India want in the shortest format of the game.

Recently, during his commentary stint for the IPL 2024 game between Gujarat Titans and Mumbai Indians, Pietersen had said: “The World Cup is happening in the USA. India are playing Pakistan in New York. You’d want someone like a Virat Kohli to help the game grow.”

Kohli had taken exception to that.

“I know my name is now attached to just promoting the game in different parts of the world when it comes to T20 cricket. I’ve still got it I guess,” Kohli had said with a smile after being awarded the player of the match for his 77-run innings against Punjab Kings.

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