XtraTime Web Desk: Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli has said he is keen for his County cricket stint to prepare well ahead of India’s tour of England later this year. Kohli is currently holding the second spot in ICC’s Test batsman rankings and on the top of the ODI rankings.
In England, Kohli has only managed to score 134 runs in 10 innings and he is desperate to improve his batting stats there.
“Playing county cricket will help me improve my game,” the 29-year-old batsman said.
“I think it makes things more challenging and more competitive and there are no guarantees whether you are going to do well even if you go in advance.
“It’s just about giving yourself more opportunity to get used to the conditions that you are not used to.
The all-important series will see India play England in three Twenty20 matches, three ODIs and five Tests.
It has been widely reported that Kohli would join English county side Surrey for a brief stint in June.
Surrey’s director Alec Stewart had expressed interest in signing Kohli after reports the Indian cricket board would allow their top batsman to skip a one-off Test against Afghanistan starting June 14.
Kohli had stressed the need for getting used to local conditions after India, the world’s top Test team, lost a series to South Africa 2-1 in January.
“If players get an opportunity then why not,” he said of Indians taking whatever chances they get to hit abroad.
But speculation of Kohli’s debut in county cricket has rubbed some the wrong way.
Former England paceman Bob Willis said England risked losing Test matches at home if “we’re accommodating all these visiting players”.
“I can’t stand overseas players in county cricket,” he told Sky Sports.
“The only way to improve our Test team is to have as many England-qualified players playing in the County Championship as possible.
“Instead, they’re going to pay Kohli, presumably, five figures a match so he can hone his skills in English conditions before a Test series. It’s a nonsense.”