“If I was India, I will keep pushing with him” – Ricky Ponting believes Virat Kohli should be part of the 2022 T20 World Cup squad 

Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has urged India to persist with Virat Kohli amid his dry spell. The 33-year-old has found it difficult to rack up runs, leading to several questioning his place in the side for the upcoming 2022 T20 World Cup.

The former India skipper did not have an eventful tour of England, finishing with a poor tally of 76 runs in six innings. The ongoing calendar year has been a forgettable one for Kohli so far, with only a poor home season and a lackluster Indian Premier League (IPL) campaign to show so far.

Ponting is of the opinion that if India continues to stick with Kohli, the move might pay dividends at the tournament in Australia. The 47-year-old said in the latest episode of the ICC Review:

“If I was India, I will keep pushing with him, because I know the upside. If they actually get him back confident and playing as well as he can, that upside is better than most. So I think if I was a captain or a coach around the Indian setup, I will be making life as easy as possible for him to feel as comfortable as possible, and just wait for him to flick the switch and start scoring runs again.”

Kohli’s place in the squad is under threat following Deepak Hooda and Shreyas Iyer’s promising displays at No. 3.

Ponting also claimed that if the former Indian skipper is omitted from the squad, it might be difficult for him to make a comeback. The Australian added:

“If you leave Virat out of the eve of the World Cup and someone comes in and has a reasonable tournament, it will be hard for Virat to get back in it,”

Kohli will have a month off to regroup and focus after being rested from India’s tour of the Caribbean. The Men In Blue are scheduled to play three ODIs and five T20Is against the West Indies, beginning on July 22.

“If I was an opposition player, I will be fearing playing an Indian team that has Virat Kohli in it” – Ricky Ponting

The ace batter is still an integral member of the Indian squad with management and fellow teammates reiterating his influence in the recent past. Kohli is next expected to be seen in action during the 2022 Asia Cup.

EXCLUSIVE: Ricky Ponting’s strong comments on what should happen next with Virat Kohli.

Claiming that it is only a matter of time before Kohli regains his touch, Ponting said:

“Every great player that I have seen in this game has been through it at some stage, whether that’s a batsman or a bowler, they have all been through it. And somehow, the best (players) find a way to rebound and respond, and it’s only a matter of time before Virat does that.”

Ponting concluded:

“I think if I was an opposition captain or an opposition player, I will be fearing playing an Indian team that has Virat Kohli in it, more than I would be one that doesn’t have him in it.”

India have been drawn alongside Pakistan, South Africa and Afghanistan in the Super 12s stage of the 2022 T20 World Cup. They will be joined by two more nations following the culmination of the qualifier stage.

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