IPL 2022: Virat Kohli will bounce back; just needs mental freshness, says Shane Watson

Virat Kohli has scored just 128 runs in 9 games in IPL 2022
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Virat Kohli has scored just 128 runs in 9 games in IPL 2022

Highlights

  • Virat Kohli has scored just 128 runs in 9 games in IPL 2022
  • Kohli has suffered two consecutive duck dismissals this term
  • RCB next take on GT in IPL 2022 on Saturday

Former Australia batsman Shane Watson has backed Virat Kohli to bounce back from his current struggling phase.

The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) star Kohli has scored just 128 runs in nine games at an average of 16 in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022. Even on the international level, Kohli has not scored a century since 2019.

Kohli recently stepped down as India's captain across formats and also gave up RCB's captaincy responsibilities.

"In the end, Virat has got close to a lifetime's worth of credit. He will come good, everyone knows he will come good. It's about his decision, whether he thinks he will take some time off, whether he thinks he needs that, whether he decides to keep playing with a little bit of time to freshen up, he will be able to find it very quickly," Watson told The Grade Cricketer.

"You don't lose your skill as he has got, it can be suppressed a little bit because of the situations or you're a little bit tired or whatever, it can happen in the game of cricket. No one has gone about their career scoring runs non-stop, especially in a long career. There will be little periods where there will be a little bit of downtime. But Virat, he is just so good, he will find his way. He has got a lot of credit in his bank," the Australian cricketer added.

In RCB's latest IPL 2022 outing, which was against Rajasthan Royals (RR), Kohli was promoted to open the batting, wherein he had tasted an abundance of success, averaging over 40 in the past. However, nothing changed as Kohli followed his golden ducks with a disappointing nine. The former RCB skipper evidently looked uncomfortable during the 10-ball stay before falling to a bouncer from Prasidh Krishna's delivery.

Meanwhile, Watson, who is the current assistant coach of Delhi Capitals (DC) also explained that a coach's role is crucial in helping a star player such as Kohli who is going through a tough phase, saying it's all about keeping the player mentally fresh.

IPL 2022: It'll be all about Kohli's mental freshness, says Shane Watson

The former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) batsman also pointed out that Kohli is in the stage of his career where he might find it difficult to maintain the incredible intensity that he has maintained over the years and it's important for him to be mentally fresh.

"As a coach, you have to just be around him trying to make sure he is as mentally fresh as possible. Technically, he knows his game better than most players. It's so ingrained. Knowing that it's all around his mental freshness.

"The intensity that he always had going into every game he played is superhuman. Knowing everyone that I have really seen, apart from a couple of guys, they have not been able to maintain that kind of intensity over years. Virat now has come to a point where it's hard to maintain. So for me, it's will be all round his mental freshness. That's just around understanding individuals. His technique is always super good," the Delhi coach added further.

After registering two straight wins in the IPL 2022, RCB have now lost both their previous games. Faf du Plessis-led RCB's next game is scheduled against table-toppers Gujarat Titans (GT) on Saturday at Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai.

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