He is just 24. But his clinical stroke play has aided India seize unparalleled victories. You might be loathing me for writing this when Sachin Tendulkar’s departure from cricket is just another fortnight away, but Virat Kolhi is on a mission to enjoy every moment of cricket. Monster scores have been deemed meagre on the desolation of this number three batsman. Virat Kolhi is making a taciturn glide towards glory as people are busy talking Sachin, Dhoni and Yuvi.
16 centuries in just 115 ODIs. Boy! Sachin took 191 games and was 25 then. Virat was touted a big anticipation for the international team after he led India to the Under-19 World Cup victory in 2008. No player could cement his place in the side and the situation was no different for Kohli. In the inception of his ODI career he was benched for most of the matches in the team of superstars. He got his odd chances when Sachin Tendulkar, Virendrer Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh were injured. This second fiddle batsman took the opportunity so grandly that Yuvi could not make a return. Then for a while it was either Suresh Raina or Yuvi who could make it to the playing eleven.
Virat Kohli became the first Indian to score a century on World Cup debut in 2011. He played a catalyst in the World Cup laurels then. After the World Cup when the seniors including skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni took rest, Virat continued to quench his thirst for runs. His recent blinder of 100* off just 52 balls, the fastest by any Indian, was the sole reason because of which India chased down a mammoth 359, the second highest run chase in the history of the game. This blitzkrieg innings made him a hero because, in cricket, no matter how big you play, you become huge only in a huge game.
Besides ODIs, Virat is a prominent member of The T20 team, again commanding the number three position. His stint in the Indian Premier League with the Royal Challengers Bangalore has been stupendous. Kohli made his maiden test hundred at Adelaide in a series in which the Indian batsmen were made to be looked like guinea pigs by the Australians.
The exuberance of Virat has always been on the apogee. His bindaas lifestyle has been on the radar of many critics. But as long as he continues delivering I fancy him over 50 ODI centuries in a decade and simultaneously transcend beyond Sachin in many other records. Sachin Tendular brought a new level of class in the world of cricket. Virat Kohli can bring another!