Former India bowler Irfan Pathan believes Virat Kohli would need to be “aggressive” in order to counter spin in the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Kohli’s struggles against spin have been concerning, as the batsman has been unable to play his natural game and has been dismissed on multiple occasions.
Even during the most recent red-ball series against Bangladesh in December, the flashy right-hander seemed to be struggling. Additionally, in the two Test matches, Kohli was removed by Taijul Islam and Mehidy Hasan. Irfan Pathan encouraged the former India captain to play aggressively in the next series to face the likes of Nathan Lyon and Ashton Agar.
“One thing he (Virat Kohli) will be keeping in his mind is how he’s going to be combating the spin of (Nathan) Lyon as well as (Ashton) Agar. Since he has been suffering against spin in particular, I believe one thing he can do individually is to try to be a bit more aggressive, as I believe the strike rate against spin has also decreased “Irfan said on Star Sports.
As Rohit Sharma and the company prepare for the key match against Australia, Kohli will seek to overcome his failings against spin and go for huge runs. Irfan further said that despite playing Test cricket, the hitter would benefit from being a little aggressive against spinners.
“I know we’re talking about Test cricket here, but he should be a little more aggressive against spin at times; it might help you in that encounter when you’re actually facing guys like Nathan Lyon, who is outstanding with his spin, extra bounce, and getting that ball moving away from the right-hander as well. So I believe that’s something he should bear in mind,” Irfan continued.
India and archrival Australia will play a four-match Test series beginning on February 9. Both sides will be eager to qualify for the World Test Championship 2021-23 finals.