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India vs Sri Lanka 2017: Virat Kohli uses shorter bat handle to drive balls

Kohli has struggled against the fuller ball outside off stump in the recent past.


Virat Kohli
Will this change help?

What’s the story?

Ahead of the first Test match at the Eden Gardens, Indian captain, Virat Kohli is slogging it out i the nets to get into a proper groove.

According to reports, Kohli has been practising a lot against the short ball and is also looking to employ reverse sweep against the spinners to counter the threat of the Sri Lankan bowling.

However, there is one particular aspect which stood out during the day's practice: the Indian captain was seen trying to drive the full ball using a shorter bat handle.

The details

Kohli has struggled against the fuller ball outside off stump in the recent past when he has edged them to either the slips or the wicket-keeper and this particular approach could well be a way to iron out the flaws.

With a shorter bat handle, the grip on the bat can be more top hand oriented which will allow him to be in control of his drives away from his body.

Kohli called the CAB members and asked them to chop off the top half of his handle shortly before he hit the nets.

In case you didn’t know…

Ever since the England tour back in 2014, Kohli has struggled outside the off stump and teams have made their plans to target him at around the fourth stump line which has made him reach out to drive, a trait which has led to his downfall.

What’s next?

It would be interesting to see if the Indian captain uses the same bat handle during the Test match. If he does, the approach of the bowers and Kohli's own footwork would be an interesting watch, since he has to cope with a different type of willow.

Author’s take

The reason for Kohli's stupendous numbers in the recent past has been his ability to evolve and not be too fussy about making changes to his game to stay ahead of his opponents.

The aforementioned technique tweak is another example of him constantly trying to improve his game and not merely resting on his laurels.

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