Cricket

T20 WC 2024: Virat Kohli's Lean Form Gives Chances To Others, Says Batting Coach Rathour

Kohli was tested once again in the powerplay and ended up with a run-a-ball 24, his first double digit score in the tournament

(AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan)
India's Virat Kohli plays a shot during the ICC Men's T20 World Cup cricket match between Afghanistan and India at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados, Thursday, June 20, 2024. (AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan)
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Virat Kohli has been “challenged” in the ongoing T20 World Cup but his lean run is allowing the less experienced players to step up and contribute to the team’s cause, India batting coach Vikram Rathour said on Friday.  (More Cricket News | Full Coverage)

India outplayed Afghanistan at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown on Thursday to make a perfect start to their Super 8s campaign.

However, Kohli was tested once again in the powerplay and ended up with a run-a-ball 24, his first double digit score in the tournament.

“I’m not happy. I would love it if he gets going and scores more runs,” Rathour said when asked about the team's unbeaten run in the event without Kohli’s contribution.

“But yeah, it is good when you are challenged at times. You know, the guys who are not getting too much of batting in India sometimes, they are the ones who put up scores today and our middle-order came to play. So, it was good to see,” he said.

Rishabh Pant was impressive while Suryakumar Yadav took the game away from Afghanistan with a sublime fifty.

India will play Bangladesh in Antigua on Saturday. The squad has four spinners and considering the conditions in the Caribbean, it makes the team stronger.

“We've always had depth as a team, I believe. But yeah, these conditions maybe suit us more because we can afford to play two or three spinners at times. So that I believe can be our best team. That is our strength.

“It feels like…somebody like Axar (Patel) playing at eight gives you a lot of confidence because he can bat and he's bowling really well at the moment. So, it does give you a lot of options,” he said.

The former India opener also expected the conditions in the Caribbean to be much better than they were in New York where India played three games.

“We already played in the worst possible conditions in New York. So, anything after that is feeling good only. So, I am expecting wickets to be better (here),” said Rathour.

Bangladesh are coming into the game after a loss to Australia and are one of the easier teams in the tournament.

But Rathour said India will not leave anything to chance.

“They're a good unit. They have a lot of guys who can spin the ball and they are good in certain conditions. And these conditions do suit them a little as a team I think because the wickets seem to have a bit of help for the spinners and they do have spinners in their team.

“But again, in this format I think every team is a tough team. I don't believe any contest in T20 cricket is an easy contest,” he added.

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