New Delhi: Virat Kohli's meteoric rise in recent times has prompted the Sri Lankan cricket team to devise a game plan for the Indian batsman ahead of next month's Twenty20 World Cup, according to opener Tillakaratne Dilshan.
"We are not meeting them in the first round. If we have to meet India in the Super Eights or the semifinals then we have to plan against him," Dilshan told PTI from Colombo.
Dilshan, who is leading the Basnahira Cricket Dundee side in the inaugural edition of the Sri Lankan Premier League (SLPL), rated Kohli as one of the best young players in world cricket at the moment.
Dilshan rated Kohli as one of the best young players in world cricket at the moment.
"He is batting really well not just the last month but since the 2011 World Cup. He is scoring heavily and enjoying a great form. He is one of the best young players I have ever seen. For me, if he continues to bat like this then it's not easy to get him out.
"We planned for him in the recently played series but it was not easy to get him out. Twenty20 is a different format as compared to 50-over. He is a fantastic player and playing really good cricket at the moment," the Sri Lankan added.
Kohli has scored 3,886 runs in 90 ODIs with an average of 51.81. He plundered 296 runs, including two centuries, against Sri Lanka in the just concluded five-match ODI series.
The Delhi batsman has so far played eight Tests, scoring 491 runs at an average of 32.73, with his best being 116 against Australia at Adelaide earlier this year.
On the issue of Royal Challengers Bangalore, Dilshan's IPL side, failing to pay the first installment of their salaries for season-5 held in April-May, the Sri Lankan said, "We got a little bit of money last week. We spoke to the management and I think they are going to sort this matter out as soon as possible."
"Some payment is still due but I am not worried about that. I know the owners are going to clear the dues and pay us within next month. I know they will pay us our money."
There were reports that none of the RCB players, save Chris Gayle, have received their first installments. Some members of the Royal Challengers 2012 squad, including captain Daniel Vettori, are still awaiting the first instalment of their pay.
Dilshan also rubbished suggestions that he is contemplating a change of franchise following the default committed by his owners on payment to the players.
"Not really. There is no such move in my mind."
The first edition of the SLPL kickstarted on August 10 and Dilshan said that one could not compare an established brand like IPL with the island nation's domestic league.
"I think we can't compare IPL with the SLPL. IPL is a big thing if you look at any other domestic T20 cricket in other country. I think after the Twenty20 World Cup, this is the biggest league which attracts quality international players.
"The SLPL is good for local players who could not play in IPL for some reasons. It will help them gain international experience. This is a good set-up for Sri Lankan cricket," he said.
He said the SLPL will help the Sri Lankan players get ready for the T20 World Cup in September-October.
"The SLPL will help them prepare for the World Cup. We are holding matches at Pallekele Stadium, Kandy and R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.
"These venues will be used for the World Cup. The league will help some of our players to come back to form before the start of the World Cup. This is like get ready and be 100 per cent fit for the event."