Kohli's absence is a blow for India, blow for series, blow for world cricket: Nasser Hussain

| | Chennai
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Kohli's absence is a blow for India, blow for series, blow for world cricket: Nasser Hussain

Thursday, 08 February 2024 | PTI | Chennai

Kohli's absence is a blow for India, blow for series, blow for world cricket: Nasser Hussain

A player of the stature of Virat Kohli missing the upcoming Tests against England is a blow not just for the Indian team but also for the series and world cricket in general, feels former skipper Nasser Hussain.

Hussain though supported the Indian maestro for prioritising his private life.

Kohli, who withdrew from the first two Tests against England due to personal reasons, is likely to miss the upcoming matches in Rajkot and Ranchi, and remains a doubtful starter for the Dharamsala game too.

The five-match Test series is currently tied at 1-1.

"Yeah, well, nothing's confirmed at the moment. There's speculation, whether it's the next two Test matches, they're going to announce their side in the next few hours. Whether it's the next three Test matches, so nothing's confirmed, but it will be a blow.

"It'll be a blow for India. It'll be a blow for the series. It'll be a blow for world cricket. It's going to be a special series. It already has been. The first two games have been fascinating," Hussain said on Sky Sports.

Lauding the Indian batter's achievements and contributions to cricket, the former England captain said players such as Kohli deserved to spend some time with family after serving the game with distinction for over 15 years.

"The game needs to look after the likes of Virat Kohli as well. He has been playing international cricket for more than 15 years now, and if he needs a break to be away with family, (to) get some time away from the game, we absolutely wish Virat Kohli all the best," Hussain said.

"If it means we don't get the mouth-watering possibility of an Anderson versus Kohli contest that we have seen over the years, then so be it. But Kohli and his family and his private life has to come first."

Hussain also said that while Kohli is hard to replace, he expected KL Rahul, who missed the second Test due to pain in his right quadriceps, to return to the playing XI.

"Virat Kohli is one of the greatest batters ever to play the game and any series, and any side will miss someone of his stature. It will be a blow for India, but as we have seen, they have got a very good lot of young batters.

"I think, just speculating, KL Rahul, who missed the second game after being brilliant over the last few months, could come back in for India," Hussain added.

The third Test will be held in Rajkot from February 15-19, while the fourth game is in Ranchi from February 23-27.

Recently Kohli's close friend and former South African captain AB de Villiers had revealed on his YouTube show that the Indian batting ace is missing in action due to the impending arrival of his second child.

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