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“Not looking at ODI series as preparation for T20 World Cup” – Virat Kohli

Ahead of the 3-match ODI series against New Zealand, team India captain Virat Kohli said that his side is not looking at the series as a preparation for the T20 World Cup which will be held later this year. He also said that the players need to respect the format and play as per the demands and not think too far ahead. As per Kohli, the Indian team has enough T20Is lined up right throughout the year to get enough preparation for the marquee tournament. He also believes that the IPL will give the players enough opportunities to hone their craft.

“We have had five T20s already, it’s not that we don’t have a lot of T20 cricket. We have IPL as well which is going to be a month and a half of T20 cricket. So we will probably utilise that, I think, because last year (for ODI World Cup) you did not have much opportunity to prepare yourselves apart from the games that were in front of you,” said Kohli ahead of the first ODI in Hamilton.

As per the captain, IPL will give the players enough opportunity since it is the most competitive tournament in the world and hence, players need to get into that frame of mind ahead of T20 World Cup.

“But T20s is very different, as I said. IPL is probably the most competitive tournament you can ask for as a collective and guys will look to get into that frame of mind in that tournament and not this early in a 50-over format because you don’t want to play in a different manner,” he further added.

As per the captain, the players need to identify the challenges that come with different formats and hence, they should take the challenges as they come along and not get too ahead of themselves.

“You have to respect the format, you have to play according to the pace of the 50-over game and as I spoke of the combination as well. It’s about guys getting settled in their roles and repeating that game after game so that they know I played this in this format, I have to play this in T20s or similarly in Test cricket,” Kohli said.

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