Virat Kohli not considering Hardik Pandya as a specialist batsman for the Australia Test series

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Team India have lost the three-match One Day International series by 1-2 whereas they have tasted a vice-versa result in the shorter format from as many games. Now both teams are looking forward to taking on each other in the four-match Test series. While both teams will play their A games, Indian captain Virat Kohli believes all-rounder Hardik Pandya wouldn’t be a good choice for the upcoming test series against Australia which is slated to begin from December 17 despite being in a formidable form with the bat in the limited-overs series.

Hardik Pandya adjudged the Man of the Series award after the three-match T20I series and scored two quickfire half-centuries in the 50-over format as well against mighty Australia. Although he bowled a few overs in the second ODI, he played as a specialist batsman only in the tournament so far as he is one the verge of getting full fitness for bowling following his back surgery last year.

“He’s been outstanding,” Virat Kohli said after India’s 12-run defeat in the third and final T20I in Sydney on Tuesday. “He couldn’t bowl and we knew he’s not going to bowl … We need him to bowl. That’s when he becomes that one guy who brings a lot of balance for us.”

“He himself wants to get back into the bowling space and be available as a pure all-rounder in tests, which becomes way more important. Over five days, you need a little extra from a player in that role. So he understands that and is working really hard to come back,” he further added.

On the other hand, India will play their final warmup against Australia A at the Sydney Cricket Ground from Friday which will be a three-day pink-ball match to prepare for the first day-night test against Australia in Adelaide. Meanwhile, Kohli said that he hasn’t decided yet whether he will play or take rest before the first Test.

“If I feel great I’ll definitely play,” he said. “When I get into a good headspace, I feel like I can play and switch between formats… I’m in the right headspace.”

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