Virat Kohli has been the mainstay of Indian batting unit in the longest format of the game, especially when the side is facing the heat in overseas condition. Whether it’s South Africa, England or New Zealand, Indian batsmen — barring Kohli — have found it tough to get going.
No wonder, sceptics were quick to point out such deficiencies and have pointed that the Border-Gavaskar series is already tilted in home side’s favour.
Whether it’s Glenn McGrath, Mark Taylor or any former Australian great, each felt that Australia will have an upper hand in the series with the Indian skipper missing for three matches.
However, such assumptions only discredit the ability that rest of the star-studded Indian batting line-up possesses and could be seen as mind-games played off the field.
One doesn’t need to look far but the last India tour of Australia in late 2018 where test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara took home the man of the series and not Kohli. Pujara amassed over 500 runs, including three centuries, in seven innings at an average of 74.72 while Rishabh Pant was the second highest-run scorer with 350 runs. Kohli only came third with 282 runs.
And as we dwell too much into the stats, it is also important to keep in mind that the series inducted Mayank Agarwal and Hanuma Vihari into the Indian Test team setup.
The only troubling question for the fans would be the inconsistency the Indian batsmen have showed in overseas conditions; something that barely worried Kohli.
However, let’s not forget that over the past two seasons likes Rahul, Rohit and Ajinkya have grown in stature and are two years more experienced than they were for the series.
The trio has shown many a time in their career that they know how to take their game to another level when needed and it won’t be sensible to think their hunger for runs will disappear especially after an action-packed IPL 2020.
And lastly, the team’s batting strength will get a further boost in Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha and Prithvi Shaw. Gill and Shaw are the two most valuable talent for the future and would be keeping the senior batsmen on their toes.