At a time when India skipper Virat Kohli is facing criticism from several quarters for putting his family ahead of the team, he has received some much-needed support from his former teammate Suresh Raina. Virat Kohli is currently in India to be at the birth of his first child. Anushka Sharma is expected to give birth this month.
The 32-year old returned home immediately after the conclusion of the first Test in Adelaide. Even before the start of the ongoing tour of Australia, the BCCI had confirmed the paternity leave for the India batting star. In normal circumstances, Virat Kohli would have managed to return to Australia after attending the birth of his child.
But due to the strict quarantine rules in Australia, he would not get the time to be play the latter Tests in Australia. Virat Kohli’s decision has drawn mixed reactions from the cricketing world. While one half has supported his decision, the other half has criticised him for not prioritising the nation. Former Australia skipper Steve Waugh had also expressed his surprise over the India skipper’s decision.
As far as Suresh Raina is concerned, he has said Virat Kohli was right to prioritise his family over the team. Raina, who pulled out from the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League citing personal reasons, told the Times of India that a person should be with his family when they need him the most. Appreciating Kohli’s decision, he said:
“It should be his personal decision. She (Anushka Sharma) is his wife. I did the same thing when my daughter was born. The game is with you today but might not be tomorrow. It’s the family that will stay with you. When your family, your wife need you most, you need to be there, no matter what. Virat is doing a fantastic job by being there and looking after his wife.”
Suresh Raina further stated that staying away from family during tough times like coronavirus pandemic also affects a cricketer’s game. He pointed out that a cricketer finds it tough to deliver when he keeps worrying about his family as he backed Kohli.
“In this pandemic, you need to be there for your family. If your mind is worried about them, you can’t play. He [Virat Kohli] has given so much to the country and he deserves this,” Raina further said.