'There were no plans of having Yuzvendra Chahal in the game' - Virat Kohli responds to criticism over concussion substitute

‘There were no plans of having Yuzvendra Chahal in the game’ – Virat Kohli responds to criticism over concussion substitute

A lot was said about Chahal replacing Jadeja as concussion substitute.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

The first T20I of the three-match series between Australia and India witnessed a lot of drama. Ravindra Jadeja suffering from concussion after playing a vital knock of 44* off 23 balls and then his substitute Yuzvendra Chahal coming in and bowling four overs raised a lot of eyebrows. Rather the Australian head coach Justin Langer was fuming after he was told about the same.

He was also involved in a verbal spat with the match referee David Boon who had gone by the rule books. But many alleged India of taking undue advantage of the rule. These doubts crept in as Ravindra Jadeja was seen struggling with his hamstring during his match-winning knock before being hit on the head in the final over by Mitchell Starc.

Eventually, the substitute Chahal turned the game with his spell of 3/25 as he picked crucial wickets of Aaron Finch, Steve Smith and Matthew Wade. India skipper Virat Kohli seemed to be aware of all the brouhaha about the concussion substitute matter and soon cleared that there were no fixed plans as such to bring in the leggie.

“There were no plans of having Yuzi in the game. Concussion replacements are a strange thing. Today, it worked for us. Yuzi showed character to squeeze the opponents,” he said after the game.

India’s other bowlers also shine in close victory

Not only Chahal but India’s other bowlers also did well with T Natarajan, the T20I debutant, leading the way. He picked up three wickets as well while Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar kept a lid on the run-scoring with their variations. Virat Kohli was happy with the way the bowlers showed character and lauded all of them for standing up when it needed the most. Notably, India’s best bowler Jasprit Bumrah was rested for this match.

“I thought they had a great start. They were cruising. The batters offered us a few wickets. That is T20 cricket for you. In Australia, you need to play hard and show intensity till the end. He batted beautifully in the last game. Natarajan looks like he can improve a lot. Chahar bowled well as well. Chahal got us back in the game. Hardik’s catch was a game changer as well,” the Indian skipper added.