Dissecting India’s squad for the six-team tournament, former Sri Lanka skipper Mahela Jayawardene has come in Virat Kohli’s support saying the former India skipper must be given every opportunity to find his best form during the Asia Cup in a hope he can travel to Australia later in the year in good touch.
Kohli is making a comeback in the Asia Cup squad after he was rested from India vs West Indies series ODI and T20I series. The right-hander is also not a part of the upcoming three-match ODI series against Zimbabwe. Kohli has only made four T20I appearances so far in this calendar year.
“It is unfortunate what Virat is going through right now at the moment, but he is a quality player.I believe Virat has the tools to come out of it (the form slump). He has done that in the past as well and I’m sure he’ll come through this, ” Jayawardena said on the latest episode of The ICC Review.
The 33-year-old struggled for runs during the IPL 2022 as well, managing just two half-centuries and a total of 341 runs from 16 innings for his team RCB.
Jayawardene on KL Rahul
KL Rahul, who did not feature in the T20 series against West Indies due to Covid-19, has also made a return to the side. The vice-captain has recently recuperated from sports hernia surgery. Talking about Rahul’s lack of cricket in the recent past, Jayawardene said, “That would be a concern for India. He has been out for a little while since the IPL, so having game time is quite crucial especially out there in the middle.
“The sooner he can get some game time and get that confidence back, is always going to help him, as well as the national team.”
On Rishabh Pant as opener
Jayawardene said that even though Rishabh Pant hasn’t done opening much in domestic cricket, he has the capacity to do that. “Wherever he bats, you’re not going to change his game. He is going to be a very natural player so yes, it is an option (for Pant to open),” he said.