Virat Kohli could be absent for ODI series in South Africa, here’s why

ODI cricket
Virat Kohli

India Test captain Virat Kohli could miss the three-match ODI series against South Africa in January.

According to reports in the Indian media, Kohli had asked the Board of Control of Cricket (BCCI) for some time away from the team to spend with his family.

This would coincide with the first birthday of his daughter on 11 January, while the South Africa 50-over series takes place from 19 to 23 January.

Whilst official confirmation of Kohli’s absence has not been made public, various reports claim this to be true.

“Yes, Kohli asked for a small break in January to spend some time with his family,” a source from ANI said.

“It effectively means he could miss the ODI series against South Africa.”

Last week, Rohit Sharma was appointed as the country’s new white-ball skipper, while Kohli would continue to lead the Test side.

Didn’t feel right to have two white-ball captains

Earlier, BCC president Sourav Ganguly revealed he had spoken to Kohli to try to convince him to stay on as T20I captain.

“It’s a call the BCCI and the selectors took together. Actually, the BCCI had requested Virat not to step down as the T20I skipper, but obviously, he did not agree,” Ganguly said.

“And the selectors did not feel it right to have different captains for two white-ball formats.

“So it was decided that Virat will continue as Test captain and Rohit will take over as white-ball captain. I as president personally spoke to Virat and the chairman of selectors also spoke to him.

“We have full faith in Rohit’s leadership abilities and Virat will continue as Test captain.

“We as BCCI are confident Indian cricket is in good hands. We thank Virat for his contributions as captain of the white-ball format.”

Meanwhile, Sharma has been ruled out of the Test series against South Africa later this month with a hamstring injury.

He has been replaced by Priyank Panchal, and will join up with the rest of the squad at a later stage.