Virat Kohli is in his form ever since the IPL had been taking place. Though his team, Royal Challengers Bangalore couldn’t make it to the finals, his presence and his contribution towards his team’s success could not be ignored. Since the IPL started moving towards its end, the next season for India was announced against Australia and it was the big news then. But even before the commencement of the series, speculations started flowing in hugely. BCCI camp revealed the news that made it the talk of the fraternity.
The Indian Captain Virat Kohli was all set to embrace parenthood during the commencement of the series. He was also granted paternity leave for the same. He is set to take a leave from the Indian camp in December that only implies that he will be available for just the first Test match against Australia. It is obvious that once he goes on leave, he won’t be playing the rest of the Test matches, which are considered to be one of the most crucial matches of the whole tour.
The call from BCCI’s end was unexpected and is termed to be a big call. It has also been criticized by many of the fraternity members of the global cricket scenario. Well, every coin has two sides, and this story too had two sides, the other side being supported by many cricket pundits who thought it to be a necessary move for the board to allow the skipper to be available with his family before his child’s birth.
It was undoubtedly a spectacular season for Kohli when the last time he was in Australia for a tour. He had scored a whopping total of 282 in the 4 test series with an average run standing at 40.29. He had displayed an impeccable performance as a skipper where under his leadership; the team had portrayed a historical performance of win against the Aussies with Test Series down under. No Asian team could previously do so, and his captaincy became the opportunity for many to follow.
That last series did not witness Steve Smith and David Warner playing for their country in the playing XI, because they were serving a 12-month ban as issued by the Australian Board. But this time around, these two phenomenal batsmen will be seen around in the team to contribute enough to the Australian batting order; providing them with the necessary guidance and depth.
Even Ian Chappell, the former Australian captain and former Indian head coach believes that the absence of Kohli might leave the team into a dark pit. The batting order is strongly dependent on Kohli and his excellence is required for the trophies to be fetched. Once the leave was applied by Kohli, even the board was facing a dilemma about choosing the right candidate to head the team as a captain.
However, the absence of the skipper might open the doors for other younger talents to take the baton of leadership forward and prove their worth. The void in the batting order too needs to be fulfilled with a serious passion to not damage the morale of the team, and maintain the stance on the pitch as a wall.
The confusion remains at the host camp too. Ian Chappell has pointed out his confusion towards the Aussie opening pair that can leave a remarkable impact. This has been the focus since many weeks now as it is yet to be resolved and confirmed.
David Warner’s opening partner was to be decided in a meeting before the tour and the options were Joe Burns and Will Pucovski, who is seemingly the Australian rising star. It was a tough decision to be taken by the Australian head coach and Chappell.
It was said that if anybody was not eyeing the position of an opener, Burns is who is going to open. Pucovski too had been hammering for the position who did not fail to prove the worth. So whoever comes to open the game, it will be a tough competition for the Indian team in the absence of Kohli.
The tour had been building anticipation ever since it was announced and the selection decisions have seemed to have added the stimulus of excitement. The win will only be bagged by the selectors who have proven themselves to be the bravest while putting forward their decisions.