You'll never see Kohli skip Tests to play BBL: SA legend outlines harsh reality | Crickit

You'll never see Virat Kohli skip Test cricket to go play BBL: SA legend outlines harsh reality of country vs T20 debate

Jan 10, 2024 07:06 AM IST

Brian McMillan gave Virat Kohli's example and explained how Test cricket should be given precedence.

Virat Kohli's love for Test cricket is the stuff of legends. And there is little doubt that the same dedication and passion is what made him India's most successful Test captain. Under Kohli, Indian cricket reached great heights, finishing with the ICC Test mace five years in a row, winning a first-ever Test series in Australia and reaching the final of the inaugural World Test Championship. India under Kohli in Tests were a different breed altogether – untouchable and home and a real, genuine threat overseas.

Virat Kohli is the greatest advert for Test cricket(PTI)
Virat Kohli is the greatest advert for Test cricket(PTI)

But while in India, Test cricket thrived under Kohli, the same cannot be said for the current generation of South African cricketers. Cricket South Africa's decision to send a second-string squad to New Zealand for a Test series and reserve the top-flight players for the SA20 has created quite a storm in the cricket fraternity around the world. Australia great and former captain Steve Waugh termed it as the first step towards death of Test cricket, once again igniting the country vs T20 debate.

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One of South Africa's greatest ever, Brian McMillan weighed in on the saga and expressed disappointment over the direction in which cricket in South Africa is heading. McMillan is old school, and like many for his generation, nothing beats the grind of Test cricket; hence, it was no surprise to see one of the best all-rounders of the 1990s, support the traditional format. He pointed out that while T20 is important for players, nothing should come at the cost of sacrificing the ultimate test.

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"I hope modern players are making enough money otherwise it's very difficult to do business. It is very hard on players. One of our guys (Heinrich Klaasen) retired now and will obviously play in the T20 league and I have got my views on how countries should run their players in essence. People make a name on essence," McMillan told PTI.

'Look at Kohli'

McMillan, a veteran of 78 ODIs and 38 Tests, cited the example of Kohli, who has always prioritised Test cricket over anything else. Everytime there is a big series around the corner, Kohli rests himself and hits the top strides before embarking on a Test challenge. He looked in great nick against South Africa in the two-Test series and will be back for the five Tests against England starting January 24 after wrapping up the three T20Is against Afghanistan.

"I think it's a world feel that you have to give priority to one's country and I think India has been doing it quite well. You finding Kohli and boys playing Test cricket is great. You don't find them putting out Tests to play BBL. Test cricket will be threatened, but I suppose, it will remain the ultimate game," added McMillan.

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