Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra (Image Credit: Twitter)

Former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra insisted that the 33-year-old Virat Kohli wasn’t in his usual elements in the first ODI against South Africa held at Boland Park in Paarl on Wednesday.

Kohli fought well to score 51 before attempting an uncharacteristic sweep shot against Tabraiz Shamsi which resulted in his downfall. The reason he attempted the sweep in the first place was that he was unable to dominate, as per Chopra.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo Credit: AFP)

Virat Kohli didn’t really look the way you expect him to be. Honestly speaking, he didn’t seem to be in that good form, else you don’t see him play so many sweeps. He played those sweeps because he was unable to dominate or rotate the strike,” Chopra said in a video on his YouTube channel.

Chopra also felt that KL Rahul had to take on the part-time spinner, Aiden Markram, who has become South Africa’s go-to bowler in the powerplays.

Shikhar Dhawan-Virat Kohli
Photo Credit: (Getty Images)

Rahul was slightly cagey, he was a little defensive. They started the bowling with Markram and you didn’t really go after him. That’s a bit of a problem because 296 was a slightly above-par score considering the pitch, which was slow, gave the feeling of an Indian pitch,” Chopra added.

Aakash Chopra reserves special praise for Shikhar Dhawan

The returning Shikhar Dhawan showed why he is crucial at the top for India as he scored a brisk 84-ball 79 at the top which kept the run chase alive. The moment he was dismissed, however, the Indian team lost the plot.

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan. (Photo: Twitter)

Rahul got dismissed by Markram but after that, Shikhar Dhawan showed that when everyone crumbles under pressure, he rises to the top. People were talking about him having not scored runs in the Vijay Hazare and to play someone else, but Shikhar is rock-solid gold,” Chopra mentioned.

South Africa won the first ODI by 31 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the series. The second game will be played at the same venue on Friday.

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