HomePlayers CareerThe Modern-Day Legend: Virat Kohli

The Modern-Day Legend: Virat Kohli

Every cricketer has their own time, but someone is not made for such small periods of time. Some players are literally made for cricket. 

Cricket has witnessed some legendary batsmen likeĀ Viv Richards, Ricky Ponting, Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, etc., for a long time. The batsman which we are talking about is nothing behind that range of these batsmen.

He has already made his name in the whole cricket world with his amazing physique, amazing cricket skills, and some other reason.

Yes, You thought it correct we are talking about the greatest batsman across formats of the current generation.

Introduction:

Virat Kohli is a cricketer who captains the Indian team and bats in the top order. The Delhi lad is regarded as one of the best batsmen in the world. What makes him so good is his amazing consistency in all three formats of the game.

Virat Kohli captained the Indian team to victory in the ICC U-19 World Cup in Malaysia in 2008, playing a vital role with the bat. He was bought by Royal Challengers Bangalore in the first-ever IPL auction that year. The 19-year-old made his ODI debut for India on 18 August 2008. He slowly rose up the ranks, chipping in with vital contributions, and got selected for the 2011 World Cup squad.

Beginning of an Extraordinary Career:

Virat Kohli announced himself on the big stage with a hundred on his World Cup debut against Bangladesh in Dhaka as India brought up a big win. He also played a crucial inning of 35 against Sri Lanka as India lifted the trophy.

He scored a brilliant maiden Test hundred against Australia Down Under in 2012. In the following Commonwealth Bank series, he scored a brilliant 133* off 86 balls against Sri Lanka in Hobart, smashing 6 fours off a Lasith Malinga over. He got a fine 183 against Pakistan in the Asia Cup that year, thus establishing himself as an integral part of the Indian batting line-up’s future.

Kohli hit a crucial 43 against England in the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy final as MS Dhoni became the first captain to win all three ICC trophies. “Cheeku” had a fine World T20 run the next year as he smashed 72* and 77 in the semi-final and final, respectively, even as the team fell to a defeat. 

However, the true test of his mental strength came a few months later. Kohli had a horrendous tour of England as he crossed 50 just once in all formats and constantly got out to the clever bowling of James Anderson. But he had his career-high of 692 runs in 4 Tests in Australia in 2014-15 even as the team lost.

It was in this series that he was given the captaincy of the Test side. He would go on to become India’s most successful Test captain in the future.

World Cup and his Unbelievable Records Through the Years:

Virat Kohli had a decent World Cup but failed in the semi-finals against Australia. Kohli’s knockout form in World Cups has been an object of constant scrutiny in what has been a stunning career.

Then came 2016. The year of Virat Kohli. Yes. You heard it right. The right-hander started off the year by crossing 50 7 times out of 8 on the ODI and T20I tour of Australia. He carried his form into the Asia Cup and the World T20, where he played a famous knock of 82* in a thriller against Australia. 

He ended the tournament with 273 runs and the man of the tournament award, which he had earlier won in 2014. He racked up 4 Test double-hundreds in the 2016-17 season. He was named the limited-overs captain as well, following Dhoni’s quitting the role. Kohli led the team to the position of runners-up in the ICC Champions Trophy.

He continued his phenomenal batting form with double hundreds against Sri Lanka. Virat became the second-highest century-maker in ODI cricket, surpassing Ricky Ponting in 2017. He batted finely in the South Africa Test series and followed it up with a marvelous run of 558 in 6 games in the ODIs.

Now came a big challenge. India touring England in June 2018. Kohli’s struggles in the previous series were well-documented. However, he stunningly redeemed himself, scoring 593 runs in 5 Tests, including 2 hundred. He almost equaled Sir Don Bradman as the only player to score 600 runs in 4 different Test series. 

However, it was a disappointing series from the captaincy point of view, as the team sank to a 4-1 defeat. The no.3 smashed 3 consecutive centuries against the West Indies at home a few months later, becoming the fastest to 10000 ODI runs in the process. He then led the team to a historic victory in the Test series Down Under, as they sealed the rubber 2-1.

In the process, Virat became the first Asian skipper to win a Test series in Australia. The T20I and ODI legs were drawn and won, respectively.

The team went on until the 2019 ICC World Cup semi-finals, as Kohli(5 consecutive fifties)and Rohit Sharma (5 hundred)were in imperious batting form. However, they fell short in an upsetting semifinal against New Zealand.

Conclusion about the Career of Virat Kohli

Kohli has achieved feats such as becoming the highest all-format runscorer in a single decade in the aftermath. He also has 7 double hundreds in Tests, the most by an Indian. His total of 70 International hundreds is third only to Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting.
Kohli has often been touted as the natural successor to Sachin in Indian batting.

However, he has downplayed such comparisons. As of February 2021, Kohli is the only player to average 50+ in all game formats.

His success has often been attributed to his classic strokeplay, quick running between the wickets, and stamina.

Also, he is an excellent fielder with 250+ catches at the International level.

As far as the IPL is concerned, Kohli has been criticized for his side’s poor show. He hasn’t won a trophy yet in 8 seasons as RCB captain. But there is no doubt about Kohli: the batsman in the IPL. He has close to 6000 runs(most), and 5 hundred. 4 of them came in a jaw-dropping season in 2016(of course, his best year as a cricketer), when he made a record 973 runs as the team lost in the final.

To sum up, Virat Kohli is one of the finest talents Indian cricket has ever witnessed. And one hopes that he continues to grow in status as time progresses.

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Rohit Chhabra
Rohit Chhabra
Knows a Bit About Cricket!!
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