Kohli defends Dhawan’s form against SA


India Test captain Virat Kohli has been asked to defend a number of issues involving his team, from the selection of Stuart Binny to the form of opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan, but says all is well in the camp.

Kohli was asked after the second Test against South Africa, which was drawn in Bangalore, about Dhawan's poor form in the series. Dhawan is averaging 18 across all formats against the Proteas on this tour.

But Kohli defended the batsman, citing the centuries Dhawan scored in the Tests against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka ahead of South Africa's visit.

Kohli defended his team-mate: "If you call scoring two hundreds in three Test matches struggling, then I don't know what 'in-form' is.

"His last three matches, he has got a hundred in Galle, he has got a hundred in Bangladesh, unfortunately he got injured after and he played first Test match after that in Mohali.

"So let's not be too hard on someone because of two innings or three innings."

As for selecting all-rounder Binny for the Bangalore wash-out, Kohli said they had intelligence that suggested the deck would be suited to seam, which is why Amit Mishra was dropped.

Kohli said they could not afford to be rigid in their selections, and take each match as it comes: "I think you have to choose the allrounder according to condition. You can't be stubborn about the ability.

"You have to consider who can do the right job in those conditions, because some people will be more effective. This team is about flexibility. We did not bowl Amit Mishra here.

"Of course, he's bowled well in the past few months. But he understood we needed someone like Stuart in these conditions.

"Bangalore does something in the last couple of days (of the match), and this is the feedback we got from the guys who have played here and bowled on this pitch.

"There's no set combination in this team. Everyone is ready to play at any stage and willing to perform for the team, which is a positive sign."