Former Australia pace bowler Glenn McGrath has shared that Virat Kohli’s absence will have an effect on India’s chances in the Test series against Australia as he is the ‘worth two players’. Notably, Kohli will miss the last three Tests as he’ll be back to India for the birth of his first child with his wife Anushka Sharma. McGrath also expressed that Cheteshwar Pujara might not have that much impact as he’s coming from a long break.
“It will impact the series,” McGrath said in a media interaction. “The player of his quality and class, for India to lose him in three out of four Tests is a big blow. It will be for the other players to step up. I can totally understand him wanting to go back for his first child’s birth. Kohli is worth two players; one, as a batsman and two, as the captain, setting the field with his energy and attitude. Australia would want to dominate the series and level the ledger. They have Smith and Warner back.”
Pujara had scored 521 runs in four matches in their last tour which also included three centuries. However, he didn’t feature in the IPL so he hasn’t played for a long time due to COVID-19 imposed break from the game.
“That first Test is going to be interesting. That is a day-night Test. India haven’t played a day-night Test in Australia. At night, with the sun setting, it will probably start favouring the fast bowlers. It will be about timing, when you are bowling or batting. Virat, if he has to have an impact in the series, will have to make an impact in the only Test he is playing. That will set the tone. Two years back, the first Test win in Adelaide gave them a lot of confidence,” McGrath said.
“As far as other batsmen are concerned, Rohit Sharma is a quality batsman who hasn’t achieved at the Test level what he should be achieving. Maybe when Virat goes home, he might just step up and show what he can do. You can’t just focus on one player. You have Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, KL Rahul. India has a strong batting line-up,” McGrath concluded.
Team India have reached Sydney and currently undergoing the 14-day quarantine period.
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