Former India fast bowler Ashish Nehra believes that Virat Kohli was sorely missed in the team’s loss in the second Test against South Africa.
Nehra said that he couldn’t say that India would have won had he been fit but felt that a player of Kohli’s intensity is always missed.
India missed Virat Kohli the batter
“When you talk about a player like Virat Kohli, there’s always a buzz, if the result doesn’t go your way, you do miss him,” Nehra told Cricbuzz.
“I feel India definitely missed Virat Kohli the batter.
“He always keeps up the intensity but I won’t say the team’s intensity was down.
“You could hear a few voices; Rishabh Pant and Jasprit Bumrah were constantly chirping.
“So, I won’t say that if Kohli had played this (Johannesburg) match, India would’ve won.”
India not a one-man band
Nehra rubbished the suggestion that India live or die by the presence of Virat Kohli, citing his absence for the matches that won the team their first series in Australia.
“If you look at the Adelaide Test (vs Australia), India were bowled out for 36 and Virat Kohli was there. Rahane scored a century in the next game and India won the game and also the series but Kohli wasn’t there,” Nehra said.
Virat Kohli to return at Newlands
India coach Rahul Dravid has suggested that Virat Kohli will be fit to face the Proteas at Newlands.
“From all accounts, he should be fine,” Dravid said.
“He’s had the opportunity to run around a little bit, he’s had the opportunity to test it a little bit, I’ll be down only now at the moment in the nets with a few throwdowns and stuff, so hopefully with a few net sessions in Cape Town, he should be good to go.
“I haven’t had a detailed discussion with the physio as yet, but from everything I’m hearing and from just having a chat with him, he’s really improving and should be good to go in four days’ time.”