Watch: Rahul Dravid interrupts reporter's question on Virat Kohli's T20I future, counters it with epic reply
Speaking at the traditional pre-press conference ahead of the 3rd ODI against New Zealand, Indian head coach Rahul Dravid was asked about Virat Kohli's future with Team India in the shortest format. Kohli was named in ICC's Men's T20I team of 2022 on Monday.
Has Team India decided to move on from batting icon Virat Kohli in the shortest format after the T20 2022 World Cup? Indian head coach Rahul Dravid has answered the buzzing question in the recently concluded press conference on the eve of the 3rd One Day International (ODI) against New Zealand. Kohli, who ended his century drought in the build-up to the T20 World Cup, was named in ICC's Men's T20I team of 2022 on Monday.
Even though Kohli has regained top form in the shortest format, the batting icon was not named in the Indian squad for the T20I series against New Zealand. Speaking at the traditional pre-press conference ahead of the 3rd ODI against New Zealand, Indian head coach Dravid was asked about Kohli's future with Team India in the shortest format.
Also Read: 'Kohli has been struggling to play...': Jaffer sends huge 'Australia' warning to ex-India skipper amid NZ series
“Till last year, Virat's position in the T20 team was questioned,” said the reporter, who was midway in his query when Dravid intervened and came up with a stunning response. “Not by us. Not at all, never by us!," Dravid reckoned as the entire press room burst into laughter. The former Indian skipper and batting legend then explained the reason behind the non-selections of Kohli and Rohit in T20Is.
“There’s a certain priority we need to give to certain white-ball tournaments at particular stages of time. With the amount of cricket we are playing - the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and the World Test Championship - there are certain white-ball tournaments that we have to prioritise, the priority after the T20 World Cup has been these six (ODI) games,” Dravid said.
Batting maestro Kohli was named the Player of the Series in India's previous ODI assignment against Sri Lanka earlier this year. However, Kohli has failed to fire for Rohit-led India in the three-match ODI series against New Zealand. The former India skipper has registered forgetful scores of 11 and 8 in the three-match series. Kohli-starrer Team India will meet the Black Caps in the 3rd ODI on Tuesday at the Holkar Cricket Stadium.
“As you've seen, Virat has played all these six games. He'll get a bit of a break along with Rohit and 1 or 2 other guys in the next week while we play some T20I cricket. And they come refreshed on the 2nd and we have a good week's camp before we play Australia. So yeah it's just priorities. We have to prioritise certain formats,” Dravid told reporters.
One of the leading run-getters in the history of the shortest format, Kohli ended the T20 World Cup 2022 as the tournament's top scorer. The former Indian skipper slammed three half-centuries and amassed 296 runs at the T20 World Cup in Australia last year. The 34-year-old famously played a stellar knock of 82* in India's thrilling win over arch-rivals Pakistan at the T20 World Cup.