KL Rahul, who captained India in what was their last match of Asia Cup 2022, said Virat Kohli’s return to form is a great sign for the team as they build towards the T20 World Cup in Australia.
Kohli ended a long wait for his 71st international century as he scored an unbeaten 122 runs off 61 balls after opening the batting against Afghanistan. It was his first T20I century and helped India register a big win to end their campaign on a high.
“You get confidence if you play two-three innings, really happy that he (Kohli) could play that way,” said Rahul in the post-match press conference on Thursday.
“You all know Virat Kohli, you have been watching him for so many years, it is not like he will only score centuries if he opens the batting, if he bats at No 3, he can then also score centuries. It is all about roles and what role a certain player has,” he added.
“Virat scoring runs is a huge bonus for the team, and the way he played against Afghanistan, I know he is very, very pleased. He has been working on his game and that worked beautifully today. As a team, it is important for every player to get time out in the middle.”
Rahul hailed Kohli for always believing in his abilities and working as hard as he ever has over the past few years.
“Obviously, the celebration by Virat was more of relief. There has been no change in his mindset, attitude, and work ethic in the last two-three years. There has been no difference in the way he prepares for the game,” said Rahul.
“He has always had that desire, I think we are also very obsessed with numbers, obsessed with those three digits and we think, if someone is scoring hundreds, then only he is in form. His contributions have been phenomenal in the last two-three years.”
Rahul reckoned Kohli’s return to form is a great sign for him as well as the team.
“As a player, you always want to be perfect or you want to challenge yourself towards excellence, he has always been that player. Even during this phase, he has remained in the moment and he has worked on his game. That has been a learning for our entire group,” said Rahul.
“In that dressing room, none of us is surprised to see what he has done today. I am sure this will give him even more confidence, he will obviously cherish this hundred and this will build great confidence around the group as well.”
Watch KL Rahul’s press conference here.