‘I am sure, he will… in the WTC final’: MSK Prasad makes Virat Kohli prediction ahead of India vs Australia showdown
Former India chief selector MSK Prasad made a big prediction on Virat Kohli ahead of the India vs Australia WTC final.
India face Australia in the World Test Championship 2023 final, scheduled to begin from June 7 at The Oval in London. The Rohit Sharma-led side will be aiming to win their first-ever WTC title after losing in the final of the inaugural edition (2019-21), when Virat Kohli skippered the side.
Going into the upcoming match, India have plenty of positives and negatives. The negatives include the absence of star pacer Jasprit Bumrah and wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant. But one of the positives for Rahul Dravid is the form of Virat Kohli.
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Despite RCB's failure to reach the IPL 2023 playoffs, the swashbuckling batter was in fiery form and bagged back-to-back centuries in RCB's last two league games. Kohli is currently third in the Orange Cap race with 639 runs in 14 matches, at an average of 53.25 and 139.82 strike rate, including two tons and six half-centuries.
Kohli wasn't in good form in 2021 and the first half of 2022, but then he bounced back to form in the 2022 Asia Cup, where he smacked his 71st century after over three years. In the 2022 T20 World Cup, the 34-year-old ended as the tournament's highest run-scorer where India lost in the semi-finals to eventual champions England. Kohli registered 296 runs in six matches, at an average of 98.67 and a 136.41 strike rate. He also hammered four half-centuries.
Speaking to ANI, former India chief selector MSK Prasad predicted that Kohli would deliver in the WTC final due to his form and seniority within the squad. "He did not have a very great 2021-22. But that is because we expect a lot from him. He has set a very high standard for himself. He has to score hundreds in every match, otherwise, it is a failure. But he is a human after all. The captaincy pressure had him struggling for a while, but once he regained his rhythm and clarity, he did not look back. He has been in amazing form since last year's Asia Cup, and has made centuries in all formats", he said.
"He must be having in his mind that India has not won an ICC tournament for years and must be fired up to give his best to help India win. With his form, state of mind in a good place and his seniority being above 100 Tests, I am sure he will deliver in the WTC final", he further added.
Kohli began 2023 with an ODI ton vs SRi Lanka, and then built on his form to become the second highest run-scorer and top run-scorer for India in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy vs Australia. Onus will be on the former India captain in the WTC final, and he will be looking to win the title.