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Adam Gilchrist warns against dropping Virat Kohli from India T20 squad

Former Australian cricketer Adam Gilchrist warned about the danger of dropping Virat Kohli from the Indian squad for the T20 World Cup this year.

“It will be dangerous to cut Virat off at the moment," Gilchrist said. "He is, maybe, a break away from freshening up.

"He has such a vast experience. He has set a high standard for a long time, so we are judging against a great player."

Despite suggestions to drop the former Indian captain, Gilchrist said Kohli only needed a break from cricket to return to his former glory.

"He is one of the most exciting cricketers to watch, I think he just lights up a stage and makes an electric atmosphere when he is playing," Gilchrist said

After concluding the England tour earlier this month, Kohli opted out of the West Indies tour. He had been struggling with a groin injury that prevented him from playing England since their first ODI.

According to Gilchrist, India has a big chance in the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia.

"India are a talented squad of players and you can say that they are playing right now without their first eleven but getting great results," Gilchrist said.

"They are broadening their squad and filling this talent pool with international experience, so they have as good a chance as any team in Australia."

Kohli's declining performance

There have been calls to drop Kohli from the national team. Fans have also argued that he should be left out of the World Cup if he continues to struggle in the next few series.

Kohli has been a subject of criticism in recent years due to his lacklustre performance. He has not scored a century since November 2019 in all cricket categories.

He only garnered 341 runs in 16 matches—a 22.73 average—in this year's Indian Premier League (IPL). In the most recent ICC's Test rankings for men, Kohli dropped to thirteenth.

Fans made calls on social media to drop Kohli from the national team in favour of younger players who have shown more favourable performance in recent years. However, Gilchrist had a different opinion.

"The BCCI, the management and the selectors will just need to be patient with him," Gilchrist said. "If he doesn't score in a few innings, they shouldn't be too harsh on him because you don't want to suppress the natural flair.

"I can't comment on the captaincy side, whether he wants to do it, whether he is keen."

Despite his recent performance, Kohli still holds some of the highest records among Indian players, particularly in the T20I category. He made his debut in 2010 and has played in 99 matches, earning himself a total of 3,308 runs. His strike rate in the limited overs category is 137.7—one of the highest in his team.

Kohli reportedly will return to the court for the Zimbabwe tour. India is scheduled to face Zimbabwe in a three-match ODI series starting on August 18. Both squads have yet to announce their player composition.

Later, the Indian squad will also participate in the Asian Cup in UAE. All of these matches will happen ahead of the World Cup, which will commence in October.

The Indian team is still concluding their tour in the West Indies. They won the ODI series against the home team 3-0. Their next challenge is a T20I series that consists of five matches.

Gian Chacko

Sports enthusiast with love for cricket, football and sports in general. Holds 10+ years of following and writing about sports and lately also betting.