Virat Kohli needs no introduction in this modern era and for the millennial. Only a decade ago Virat was first noticed by all Indian Cricket lovers when he captained U-19 Indian Cricket Team to winning the World Cup. Over the period of time he has completely changed his career statistics and breaking all cricket records just for fun. Whenever he comes to crease for batting, it feels like just another day and he’ll make another 100 irrespective of the game situation, opposition and format of the game; he simply dominates the bowlers as if he is reading the bowler’s mind & he had visualized everything.
From the early childhood at the age of three he embraced the cricket and used to play with plastic bat as his father Prem Kohli bowl at him. So it was clear that his natural instinct, middling the ball each and every time comes because of all the practices he had made from childhood and over the course of time, he has mastered all skills of batting. Kohli & His father used to watch cricket matches on TV while other greats were playing for Indian National Team. From it was their dream that one day Kohli would play for Indian National Cricket Team and win matches for India.
Major Impacts on Kohli’s Life Journey:
Sachin Tendulkar’s Deset Storm Innings:
Sachin Tendulkar’s Electrifying Desert Storm Inning against Australia – Sharjah Cup in 1998 had transpired the young Kohli to take up cricket as his career and follow the steps of Little Master Blaster. From then he never looked back, joined West Delhi Cricket Academy at the age of 9. Kohli trained at the academy under Rajkumar Sharma and also played matches at the Sumeet Dogra Academy at Vasundhara Enclave at the same time. Sharma recounts Kohli’s early days at his academy, “He oozed talent. It was so difficult to keep him quiet. He was a natural in whatever he did and I was most impressed with his attitude. He was ready to bat at any spot, and I had to literally push him home after the training sessions. He just wouldn’t leave.”
Losing Father At very young Age:
Kohli’s father died on 18 December 2006 due to a stroke after being bed-ridden for a month. Losing a parent can be very hard for any person and that too on very young age. But Kohli channelized all his sorrows, pains and become more focused, more determined to fulfill his father’s dream. You can imagine his passion for cricket from this incident when decided to play for his team (Ranji Match) against Karnataka on the day after his father’s death and went on to score 90. He went directly to the funeral after he was dismissed. Delhi captain Mithun Manhas said, “That is an act of great commitment to the team and his innings turned out to be crucial,” while coach Chetan Chauhan lauded Kohli’s “attitude and determination.” His mother noted that “Virat changed a bit after that day. Overnight he became a much more matured person. He took every match seriously. He hated being on the bench. It’s as if his life hinged totally on cricket after that day. Now, he looked like he was chasing his father’s dream which was his own too.”
“The way I approached the game changed that day. I just had one thing in my mind – that I have to play for my country and live that dream for my dad.”
— Kohli on his innings against Karnataka
He scored a total of 257 runs from 6 matches at an average of 36.71 in that season.
Also Read: The Untold Dreams of Our Parents
Losing Focus & Concentration on IPL Debut:
Kohli confessed to the fact that he had lost bit of his focus and dedication on the IPL debut when he was selected for Royal Challenger’s Bangalore as he was much more attracted towards partying and chilling with other popular international crickters. But he realized it soon and completely changed his daily routines, eating habits. He started his journey to be the best professional cricketer not simply in game talent wise, skill wise but also as fitness wise.
Failure in England Tour:
India conceded a 3–1 defeat in the five-match Test series against England despite leading it 1–0 after the first two Tests. Kohli fared poorly in the series averaging just 13.40 in 10 innings with a top score of 39. He was dismissed for single-digit scores on six occasions in the series and was particularly susceptible to the swinging ball on off stump line, being dismissed several times edging the ball to the wicket-keeper or slip fielders. Man of the series James Anderson got Kohli’s wicket four times, while Kohli’s batting technique was questioned by analysts and former cricketers. Geoffrey Boycott said, “Jimmy Anderson ate him for breakfast. Every time Kohli came in, all he did was bowl at off stump, around the corridor of uncertainty and Kohli nicked it. He is playing with his bat too far away from his pad. He has to look at video replays of his technique and get back to basics”. India won the ODI series that followed 3–1, but Kohli’s struggles with the bat continued with an average of 18 in four innings. In the one-off T20I, he scored 41-ball 66, his first fifty-plus score of the tour on the last match of the tour. India lost the match by three runs, but Kohli reached the number one spot for T20I batsmen in the ICC rankings.
But ever since then Kohli is a force to reckon with. He takes up all the challenges, enjoys his game to the best of his ability. His consistency and match winnings knocks are unmatched. Recently he achieved the feat to become the fastest batsmen to score 10000 ODI runs and fastest to reach 35 ODI centuries.
Kohli’s Life Journey From a fan’s perspective:
When Kohli came into Indian Cricket Team, he brought so much aggression it always felt how intense and involved he is with the game. But with aggression if someone don’t follow it up with good performance, then same aggression some call it as arrogance. But for Kohli his aggression is his fuel which drives him to remain focused, determined and achieve his goal. The way he transformed himself and dedicated toward the game of cricket is truly commendable and inspiration for all of us. Thats why Virat is truely the Youth Icon of the Millennium and we wish him all the success in his future endeavor.