Kohli: 'You can't overlook Rahane's two years of hardwork'

Ajinkya Rahane did not have a great series against England and was out with a fractured hand, but is now going to be picked ahead of Karun Nair for the one-off Test against Bangladesh starting Thursday.

India captain Virat Kohli addresses the media at the pre-match press conference in Hyderabad.   -  AP

Indian captain Virat Kohli feels a good performance in one game doesn’t overshadow two years of hard work from another player.

“You have to understand what Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane) has done for the team over the last two years. He averages almost 50 in the last two years and is probably the most solid batsman in the team in Tests. We will look at him from that point of view,” Kohli said on the eve of the one-off Test against Bangladesh.

Kohli refered to Rahane and Karun Nair. “Karun was stepping into Rahane’s shoes and what he did was remarkable. But you can’t overlook two years of hard work from Ajinkya with just one Test match. He deserves to walk back into the team whenever he is fit.”

“The bench strength gives you the options when people are injured. We are lucky to have guys who are up and ready for Test cricket,” Kohli said.

“I think bowlers can be switched according to conditions. You might want to play three spinners, sometimes you might want to play three seamers. Some might be more effective on a seamer-friendly wicket, some guys might have more pace for reverse swing,” Kohli added.

“But from a batting point of view, you need big runs in Test cricket. To chip and change regularly doesn’t help a batsman gain confidence. So, it’s very important to back guys who are coming back from an injury and who have been a regular feature in your playing XI.”

“It’s very important to back your top players who have been in the XI for a long time. At the same time you need to keep those youngsters in the squad and groom them and nurture them and make them understand the situation.”

On Kuldeep Yadav, >who replaced Amit Mishra, Kohli said: “I think he has been doing well in the domestic circuit. He’s been in the reckoning. He brings in something different to the table.”

“Obviously, a leg-spinner is someone who brings variety. I feel a chinaman does the same. I don’t know how things will shape up in future, but right now our four spinners are very much set. Mishy has been doing really well but unfortunately he got injured. He will stay in our scheme of things,” the India captain said.

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