Ahead of the 1st Test match against West Indies, Indian captain Virat Kohli has issued a directive for his openers. In the Australian tour, KL Rahul struggled which prompted the management to include Hanuma Vihari in that particular slot. However, the skipper did say that KL Rahul will go back to his preferred opening spot and that now, the onus is on him and Mayank Agarwal to make the most the four innings.
"In the opening combination, we have selected only two openers, so the idea is to give them four innings, just let them go out there and express themselves. Mayank has done really well, KL (Rahul) has performed well in the past, he is looking forward to making things count in Test cricket again," Kohli said on the eve of the match.
Performances matter for the team
The skipper further said that for the players in the side, it is more about performing and getting a job done for the side. He cited the example of Australia where Vihari was only able to score to 18 runs, but then he batted for 85 balls and got the team off to a solid start which lay the platform for the middle order.
"At the end of the day, as much as individuals want to perform, it is about what you can do as a team. If you look at the Melbourne Test, how (Hanuma) Vihari and Mayank opened and though Vihari scored just 18 or 20 runs, but he batted for 85 balls, tells you it is all about team, and he handled the situation so well that Pujara and myself could go out there and play the way we did and Pujara then went to get that century for us," the captain further added.
Kohli was quick to add that the combination which will be fielded in the first Test will solely depend on the conditions and how the management reads the situation on the day of the match.
"Look it again depends on the type of combination that we are going with. Vihari has done really well since the time he has come into the team in two difficult tours. Rohit also did well in Melbourne, so it all depends on what combination we want to go with," the captain said.
Speaking about Hanuma Vihari, Kohli said that the young batsman also provides few overs with the ball and that Rohit Sharma is also a proven customer in all conditions. It will all depend on how the captain and coach react to the conditions.