Virat Kohli was left shell-shocked and in disbelief when a reporter asked the India captain a bizarre question during the post-match press conference. India lost to Pakistan by 10 wickets in their T20 World Cup opener – the first time this has happened at a World Cup – with Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan hitting half-centuries to pull off a clinical chase of 152 with two overs to spare.
However, after the match, when Kohli attended the post-match presser, he was welcomed by a reporter who asked the India captain whether he should have considered playing Ishan Kishan ahead of Rohit Sharma, who was out for a golden duck in the first over of the match to Shaheen Afridi.
"Do you think that Ishan Kishan should have played ahead of Rohit Sharma?" the reporter asked. Kohli appeared stunned, his eyes going big and wide. After taking a couple of seconds for it to sink in, Kohli said: "It's a very brave question. What do you think, sir? I played the team that I thought was the best. What is your opinion?"
A smile appeared on Kohli's face as the presser went on: "Will you drop Rohit Sharma from T20 internationals? You'll drop Rohit Sharma? You know what he did in the last game that he played right? Unbelievable. Sir, if you want controversy, please tell me before, so I can answer accordingly."
Rohit missed India's first T20 World Cup warm-up game against England, in which Ishan scored a blazing half-century and retired out after scoring 70. Rohit returned in the second game against Australia and hit a half-century. For Ishan, it was his third half-century in a row, having hit back-to-back fifties in the IPL 2021 for Mumbai Indians.
Kohli scored his 29th T20I half-century and 10th in World Cups, scoring 57 off 49 balls but it wasn't enough for Pakistan to canter to their first-ever 10-wicket win in T20Is.