Virat Kohli is set to return to professional cricket after a hiatus since January this year. The occasion will mark the beginning of the 2024 Indian Premier League (IPL) season, with his team, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), facing off against the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at the Chepauk Stadium on March 22.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli (Image source: Twitter)

Kohli’s absence was due to personal reasons, as he missed India’s Test series against England to be with his wife, Anushka Sharma, for the birth of their second child.

Recently, Kohli rejoined his RCB teammates for a training session at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. Videos circulating on social media show him participating in catching drills and enjoying a game of football alongside captain Faf du Plessis. Their camaraderie was evident as they engaged in multiple interactions during the practice session.

The upcoming IPL season holds significance for Kohli beyond RCB’s campaign, as his performances will be under scrutiny with the T20 World Cup looming shortly after the IPL. Speculations have surfaced regarding Kohli’s inclusion in the national squad for the tournament. RCB, despite never clinching the IPL title, kickstart their journey against the defending champions, Chennai Super Kings, in Chennai this Friday.

Kohli’s T20 international outings in 2023 were absent, and he made his return to the format earlier this year against Afghanistan on January 14, albeit with modest performances. Despite scoring 29 runs off 16 balls in the first match, his second innings saw him being dismissed for a golden duck.

In a show of support for women’s cricket, Kohli connected with RCB women’s captain Smriti Mandhana via video call following their triumph in the 2024 Women’s Premier League (WPL) final against Delhi Capitals. Additionally, he is slated to attend RCB Unbox, an event organized by the franchise to launch their IPL campaign, where they will also honor Mandhana and her victorious WPL team.

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