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IND v AUS 2020: Virat Kohli motivates teammates to step up in his absence

Virat Kohli talking during a team huddle
Virat Kohli talking during a team huddle
Modified 22 Dec 2020, 17:25 IST

Indian skipper Virat Kohli has left Australian shores and is on his way back to India. The prolific batsman had asked for paternity leave as he is expecting the birth of his first child in January.

Thus, it was decided that Kohli would return to India after the conclusion of the first Test in Adelaide.

Team India suffered a morale-crushing defeat in the Adelaide Test, with the contest finishing inside three days. At the end of day two, India had a lead of 62 runs and looked keen to build on it.

However, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood ran through the Indian batting line-up and restricted them to just 36 runs - their lowest Test total ever. Australia chased down the target of 90 runs comfortably with eight wickets in hand.

Virat Kohli tries to instill belief in his men to make a comeback in the Test series

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli is arguably Team India's best batsman across all three formats currently. His absence is sure to have an impact on the Indian batting.

Kohli decided to give his team a pep talk before leaving Australia. The main purpose of the pep talk was to instill the belief in the Indian dressing room that they can stage a comeback from any tough situation.

The 32-year-old reportedly instructed his teammates to express themselves and back their natural game. He also inspired them to give their all in the remaining three Tests and have faith in their ability, despite the Adelaide collapse.


Kohli has now handed over the reins to Ajinkya Rahane, who has a 100 percent win record as skipper in Tests.

Rahane had captained India in the fourth Test of the 2017 Border-Gavaskar Trophy at Dharamsala, when Virat Kohli missed out due to an injury.

He demonstrated just how good a captain he was by attacking the Australian batsmen with aggressive field placements. Rahane also led the way with the bat in the final innings of the game as India won the Test and the series 2-1.

Virat Kohli has complete faith in Rahane's ability as a captain and leader.

Rohit Sharma's form will be another crucial factor for the Men in Blue. The dangerous opener will be available for selection from the third Test at Sydney.

With India's current openers struggling in Australian conditions, Rohit will look to make an instant impact. His experience will be very handy for Team India in the absence of Virat Kohli.

Published 22 Dec 2020, 17:25 IST
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