T20 or Test: Virat is the Best

International cricket is played throughout the year and it is very difficult to score runs every now and then. The job becomes a bit tougher for a batsman if he has to switch from the shortest format to Test cricket. But when it comes to Virat Kohli, nothing is impossible for the Indian captain. After playing in the Indian Premier League, the selectors had given him a rest from the tour of Zimbabwe in order to manage his workload. It was believed that he might break down if continued for another series. Team India was piped against West Indies for the four-match Test series and when the team landed in the Caribbean Island, there were doubts whether Virat would be able to carry on with his fine form. The doubts and concerns were sent packing when the genius scored his maiden double Test hundred on the second day of the first Test match.

He played like a champion throughout his innings which was graced with 24 fours. By doing so, he became the first Indian skipper to hit a double century outside the home turf. The entire innings was a hallmark of brilliant stroke play and clever running between the wickets. Test cricket is often considered boring and a batsmen hardly pays importance to singles and doubles but Virat is different in this aspect as well. He was always on the run during his marathon knock and never missed the opportunity of taking quick singles and doubles too. From the commentary box on the Sir Curtly Ambrose end, Sunil Gavaskar and Vivian Richards stood up and warmly applauded the young Indian, with Richards, a huge admirer of Kohli himself, wearing a smile on his face. Before completing his double century, he reached another landmark on the first day of the match. Virat Kohli looked confident from ball one of his innings. He drove through the covers elegantly and with one such punch against Bishoo, the Indian captain reached yet another milestone in his glorious cricket career. Kohli reached the 3000-run mark in his 42nd test and took 73 innings behind Virender Sehwag (55 innings), Mohammad Azharuddin (64), Sunil Gavaskar (66), Gautam Gambhir (66), Rahul Dravid (67), Sachin Tendulkar (67) and Navjot Singh Sidhu (70). Kohli, who made his Test debut in West Indies five years ago at Kingston, became the 19th Indian to reach the milestone. With five centuries overseas as captain, Kohli has equaled Mohammad Azharuddin’s tally, sharing an Indian record for most centuries (five) away from home. From August 2015 to till date, the right hand batsman has scored close to 3000 runs across formats and is the first batsman to do so in the history of cricket.

The entry in Test cricket was not a smooth one for the current Indian leader as he had to face failures against the West Indies team in 2011. He was axed from the team after the series and had to wait for his next turn. The Caribbean team was on a tour of India and it was during the three-match Test series, the young Kohli was called back in the third and final Test in place of Yuvraj Singh. He scored two consecutive half centuries and has not looked back since then. The best part about his batting is the character he induces in his play. He knew that there were some shortcomings in his play outside the off stump but credit should be given to this lad for correcting them in a span of short time and the result is in front of everyone. From an ordinary Test batsman to becoming the back bone of his team’s batting order, the Delhi born batsman has done wonders in the last few years.

The recent effort is the newest chapter in his career and there is surety of seeing more magical moments from him in the future. There was no doubt on his caliber as a batsman and even his fans and cricket experts had at the back of their minds that scoring a double century was not tough for him and it was just a matter of time before he reaches this landmark and boy he did it in style by scoring a double ton as skipper of the team. He has been in such sumptuous form this year that everything is going right for him. Beginning from the World T20 he has progressively become lethal with every tournament. In the T20 World Cup, he scored three of the finest-ever T20 knocks by an Indian, against Australia, Pakistan and West Indies. He went on to score four centuries in the IPL, and eventually ended up scoring nearly 1000 runs in the event which is an unimaginable feat. It is a year where Kohli can hardly put a foot wrong in the batting department. The West Indies bowlers tried everything they could but Kohli still proved imperishable. The critics might argue that his effort came against the weak bowling attack but the vulnerability of the West Indies shouldn’t diminish the sparkle of Kohli’s brilliance against them.

Tags: Virat Kohli

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