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Virat Kohli to miss first T20I vs Afghanistan in Mohali, Rahul Dravid confirms

Team India is set to miss the services of key player Virat Kohli who is yet to join the team as well in Mohali. It remains to be seen now if Shubman Gill makes it to the playing XI in his absence or the team prefers Sanju Samson who smashed a century in ODIs at number three in South Africa.

Written By: Aditya Kukalyekar @adikukalyekar New Delhi Published on: January 10, 2024 17:45 IST
Virat Kohli
Image Source : GETTY Virat Kohli

India head coach Rahul Dravid has confirmed that Virat Kohli will miss the first of the three-match T20I series against Afghanistan due to personal reasons. Dravid attended the pre-match press conference ahead of the series opener and opened up on several things including the way players were managed due to back to back ICC events in different formats.

Coming back to Kohli, he and Rohit Sharma were picked in the squad and the duo was set to make a comeback in the format for the first time since November 2022. While Rohit will walk out to lead the side on Thursday (January 11), the fans will have to wait for a few more days to see Virat back in the shortest format for India.

Interestingly, these are the last set of games for team India before the T20 World Cup as the Indian Premier League (IPL) will be played till the third week of May and then the players will leave for the mega event in the West Indies and the USA. Dravid admitted that the World Cup this year is a little different as the team will not get to play much together and also noted that adapting to conditions will be important for the players.

"Not a lot of time in between ICC events. Had to prioritise certain formats to manage players. It's impossible for players to play all formats. Not a lot of time to prepare for T20 World Cup. We will have to rely on IPL," the India head coach said. Moreover, Rahul Dravid also coonfirmed that Yashasvi Jaiswal will open the innings alongside Rohit contrary to the reports that suggested Virat Kohli will open with the India captain. 

India squad: Rohit Sharma (capt), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Tilak Varma, Rinku Singh, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Shivam Dube, Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Kumar


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