Saturday morning came with the heavy news for Virat Kohli fans and Test cricket lovers that the superstar India batsman would be missing the remainder of the Test series against England.
Three days out from the first Test match in Hyderabad, after landing in the city, the 35-year-old had earlier pulled out from the first two Tests. The BCCI announced the squad for the remaining three games on Saturday which confirmed that Virat Kohli is not yet available and will miss the entire series.
This is the first time since Virat Kohli’s debut, back in 2011, that he will miss an entire Test series. That Kohli has featured in all of India’s Test series since his debut is a big testament to his fitness and consistency with the bat. However, due to what has been labeled a family emergency, Kohli will have to miss an entire series.
The nation is with you: RCB’s emotional message for Virat Kohli
Wishes poured in from all corners with everyone wishing strength to Virat Kohli and his family in their tough time. It has been learned that the cricketer is in London for a family emergency.
Kohli’s IPL franchise, RCB, made an emotional tweet for the ‘KING’.
RCB tweeted, “The first Test series in 13 years without Virat Kohli.
The nation is with you, and your seat remains reserved whenever you’re ready to return, King.”
Among those wishing Virat Kohli is former England captain Nasser Hussain. The commentator admitted that the fans would miss Kohli’s battle with James Anderson – very likely what would have been their last contest – but acknowledged that family always comes first.
Hussain said on Sky Cricket, “It will be a blow for India, the series and world cricket. It’s going to be a special series – it already has been. The first two games have been fascinating and make no mistake, Virat Kohli is one of the greatest to ever play the game and any series and any side would miss someone of the stature of Kohli.
“The game needs to look after Virat Kohli as well. He’s been playing international cricket for more than 15 years now and if he needs a break to be away with family, get some time away from the game, we absolutely wish Virat Kohli all the best. If it means we don’t get the mouth-watering possibility of an Anderson versus Kohli contest that we’ve seen over the years, then be it. But Kohli, and his family and his private life has to come first.”