India vs Australia: Kohli may not bat at No. 3; Indian captain reveals likely batting order ahead of 1st ODI
Virat Kohli hinted that he may give up his No. 3 spot to accommodate the trio Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul in the playing XI ahead of the...
Virat Kohli hinted that he may give up his No. 3 spot to accommodate the trio Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul in the playing XI ahead of the first One-Day International (ODI) against Australia on Tuesday.
With the return of Dhawan and Rohit in the squad and Rahul's current fine form, Kohli knows that their presence would only strengthen the top-order for the hosts.
On the eve of the opening match when Kohli was asked if he was OK about batting a bit down the order, the Indian captain immediately said he would be "happy to" do so.
"Look, I'm not possessive about where I play. I'm not insecure about where I bat," he said in a pre-match interview.
Kohli has always been flexible with his batting slot if it meant good for the team. In 2014 and 2015, he batted at No. 4 to allow Ambati Rayudu to bat at No. 3 against West Indies and Sri Lanka and in 2018, he again did the same for Rahul during the series against England.
The Delhi cricketer realises that it is his duty to groom the young blood for the future keeping in mind the goodwill of Indian cricket. If it means, he needs to sacrifice his regular batting position, he is well prepared for the same.
"Being the captain of the team it is my job to make sure that the next lot is also ready. A lot of the other people might not look at it that way, but your job as a captain is not only to look after the team right now but also to prepare a team that you leave behind when you eventually pass it onto someone else.
So, these are times when you need to be aware. It is very easy to get into a personal zone, saying I need to get runs and when I score, I feel good about everything. It does not work like that. The vision has to be always on the larger picture and figure out how you can make these guys confident. If at all someone has to take responsibility, it should be me and give the other guys opportunities as well. That is part and parcel of being a captain," the Indian captain further added.
India and Australia are set to play a three-match ODI series. The first ODI is in Mumbai followed by matches in Rajkot and Bengaluru on Jan. 17 and Jan. 19.