Virat Kohli "Under Pressure To Perform" In South Africa, Says Monty Panesar
Ex-England spinner Monty Panesar has said Indian Test captain Virat Kohli will be "under pressure to perform" in South Africa.
The Indian team will lock horns against South Africa in the 'Boxing Day' Test match as the three-match Test series starts in Centurion. The Indian team beating Australia twice in a Test series in their backyard and taking an unbeatable 2-1 lead in England have raised the expectations from them to win their first Test series in the 'Rainbow Nation'. "I think India have got a great chance. They seem like a favourite to win that series. They know how to win now away from India and that is to do with Ravi Shastri's coaching philosophy. He really instilled that belief, the motivation to say guys any situation we are going to fight and if you are in a dominant position then we are going to keep our foot on the throat. So, I think it is still there within this Indian team and this will be historic for Indian cricket for them to win their first series in South Africa and this is their best chance. They have got a stronger team. Their team is much stronger than the South Africans. I think India are firm favourites to win the series," said former England cricketer Monty Panesar to ANI.
Before coming to South Africa, Virat Kohli lost his ODI captaincy to Rohit Sharma and his form with the bat has not been the best as he has not scored a Test ton since November 2019. But according to former England left-arm spinner Panesar, all these will motivate the Indian Test captain.
"I think he will be very motivated because he knows that if he does not score a lot of runs in Test cricket then that position could be up for grabs as well. So, he is under pressure to perform but he needs to do well and actually get some wins and even India are winning and he does not score the runs that still is a positive for Virat Kohli because he knows how to get the best out of an individual. So, he needs to put that aside now and think about how to win in South Africa which is far more important and that is what I think BCCI wants from him. He wants to get the best eleven out there to win this Test series," expressed Panesar in a conversation with ANI.
Panesar has backed BCCI President Sourav Ganguly on having one white ball captain as Rohit Sharma was named the ODI captain replacing Virat Kohli.
"I think the board made the right decision because in the past you need one captain for ODI and T20 cricket and Sourav Ganguly made the right decision because he was one of the first cricketers who actually brought in that that fight for beating other oppositions away from India and especially in white-ball cricket he very much knows from the leadership point of view that one captain is already better and since Virat Kohli wanted to step away from T20 captaincy and I think he gave him the opportunity for Rohit Sharma to actually captain both teams because two big tournaments are coming up with the T20 World Cup and also the World Cup in India is the best time to have a white-ball captain for white-ball and let Virat Kohli focus on Test duties," explained Panesar.