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‘We Have A Wrong-Footed Inswinger Menace’: Dravid Backs Kohli To Bowl Couple Of Overs In Hardik’s Absence

Ahead of their ODI World Cup 2023 match against South Africa, India head coach Rahul Dravid on Saturday said that the team will rely on Virat Kohli to bowl a couple of overs if required in absence of Hardik Pandya, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the tournament.

Edited By : News24 Desk | Updated: Nov 4, 2023 20:29 IST
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Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

Ahead of their ODI World Cup 2023 match against South Africa, India head coach Rahul Dravid on Saturday said that the team will rely on Virat Kohli to bowl a couple of overs if required in absence of Hardik Pandya, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the tournament.

Star all-rounder Hardik was ruled out of the ongoing World Cup after failing to recover from his ankle injury, which he sustained on his own bowling during India’s match against Bangladesh at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune on October 19.

After that injury, Pandya missed the New Zealand clash in Dharamshala and England match in Lucknow and Indian managed to win both games comfortably.

However, the Rohit Sharma led side still miss that all-round balance of having a quality sixth bowling option and a decent batter at No. 8 as the real test begins now as the team nears the semifinal stage.

On the eve of the South Africa match at Eden Gardens in Kolkata, head coach Dravid was asked whether the team has been worrying about the lack of an extra bowling option in absence of Hardik and he mentioned that Kohli could come in handy for a couple of overs.

“Yes, we don’t have the option to have a sixth proper bowler but we have a wrong-footed inswinger menace whom we can back for a couple of overs. He was close to doing so in the last game with the crowd pushing him to do so. The response of the team and the players have been really good,” the Indian coach said in the pre-match press conference.

The 50-year-old also mentioned the former India captain Kohli, who is on the brink of equalling Sachin Tendulkar for the most ODI centuries in cricket history, is relaxed and not thinking much about personal milestones.

“Virat has been really relaxed and keen to do what he has been doing for India. I have seen nothing different in how Virat goes about his business, not worried about his 49th or 50th or his birthday,” said Dravid.

First published on: Nov 04, 2023 08:00 PM IST

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