File image of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli© BCCI
The Indian cricket team seems to have marked a new beginning in the T20 format under the leadership of Hardik Pandya. With young guns getting more opportunities, many fans and experts of the game have started to wonder if veterans like Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma will be able to return to the national team in the shortest format. However, as far as India’s retired cricketer and former chief selector Dilip Vengsakar is concerned, the duo still has a lot of cricket left in them, even for the T20 format.
Vengsarkar, who himself has also headed the selection committee in the past, feels both Kohli and Rohit will return to India’s T20 team despite the emergence of specialist youngsters in the recent past.
“Both are great players. Over the years they have won many matches. There is still a lot of cricket in them. They will be back (in T20s).
“Regarding Tests, they are an integral part of the Indian team. I am a huge fan of both. They are still in great shape physically and mentally (even though both are in their mid 30s). I always believe as a selector that form and fitness are important. Age is no criteria in cricket. Virat Kohli is supremely fit. I still believe they will play in all formats of the game,” said Vengsarkar at the Meet the Media program organised by the Mumbai Press Club.
Vengsarkar also batted for the selection of young Jammu & Kashmir pacer Umran Malik into India’s Test team.
“Yes, you have to look at future and groom players as well and at the right time. If I was a selector I would have picked (young Jammu and Kashmir fast bowler) Umran Malik for the Bangladesh Test series. Pace is very important and he can unsettle batsmen with his pace. We don’t have many who can bowl in the 150s (KMPHs). This guy will play havoc when we visit England, Australia or the West Indies,” he said.
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