Former India batsman VVS Laxman came in support of Virat Kohli for taking paternity leave for the birth of his child. Team India Captain Kohli will return to India after the opening Test match against Australia to be with his wife, Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma.

Laxman feels that everyone has to respect Virat Kohli’s decision as it’s a very important phase in his life.

“I believe you have to respect that. Yes, ultimately you are a professional cricketer but you are also a family man, and you also respect what is good for your family. So, I believe we have to respect that decision. It is a very important phase of your life,” Laxman told IANS.

Laxman, himself, missed the birth of his first child as he was on South Africa with Team India in 2006-07. While the veteran Indian batsman after a couple of years later missed a couple of Ranji Trophy matches be with his wife at the time of their daughter’s birth.

“I remember myself missing a couple of Ranji Trophy matches to be with my wife for the delivery of my daughter. It is a very important feeling, especially when you are going to get your first child,” said Laxman.

However, Kohli will lead the Indian team in the three-match ODI series, commencing from 27th November and later in T20I series and first Test match in Adelaide.

Laxman further said Kohli’s absence will affect the Indian team but it’s time for some youngsters to step up and show their calibre.

“Virat has been a fantastic captain. He will be missing three Test matches. But I think it will be an opportunity for some youngster or some other player to step up and prove his credentials because there’s no doubt that Kohli’s absence will affect the Indian team. But at the same time, it will be an opportunity for a youngster or some other batsman to show what his calibre is and become a hero for the team. It’s because when you perform in places like England, Australia or South Africa, your reputation in the game is enhanced, as well as your confidence level, so far your game is concerned, will definitely grow,” Laxman said.