Watch: IND head coach Rahul Dravid stops reporter midway and gives a stunning response to Kohli's T20I future in Indian team
Virat Kohli hasn't been part of India's T20I squad since the conclusion of the 2022 T20 World Cup. He, along with skipper Rohit Sharma, didn't feature in the T20I series against New Zealand and Sri Lanka and won't be part of the upcoming T20I series against the Black Caps starting on January 27.
It led to many questions about Virat's future in the Indian team, given the shorter format of the game. Notably, the former Indian skipper ended the T20 World Cup in Australia as the highest run-getter in the tournament.
He scored a total of 296 runs in just six innings, including four half-centuries. However, the same question arose in the pre-match press conference ahead of the third ODI on Tuesday. One of the journalists asked Indian head coach Rahul Dravid about the same question.
He asked, "Till last year, Virat's position in the T20I team was in question..." However, Dravid stopped him midway and gave a blunt response. He said, "Not by us sir. Not at all, never by us!"
January 24, 2023
When asked why Virat is not playing in the T20I squad despite being named in the ICC's T20 team of 2022, Dravid replied that there are some tournaments and series that we are looking for, and the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia is one of them, which is coming with possible qualifier chances for the World Test Championship, which is why these six ODIs were the priority after the T20 World Cup.
Dravid said, "As you've seen, Virat has played all these six games. He'll get a bit of a break along with Rohit and 1 or 2 other guys in the next week while we play some T20I cricket. And they come refreshed on the 2nd and we have a good week's camp before we play Australia. So yeah it's just priorities. We have to prioritise certain formats."
India has already taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the ongoing series against New Zealand after winning the first two games. Meanwhile, the third and final ODI game will take place on January 24 at the Holkar Cricket Stadium, Indore. If India wins it, they might move to the top of the ICC ODI team's ranking.