HomeAnalysisCoronavirus break an antidote that Virat Kohli needed!

Coronavirus break an antidote that Virat Kohli needed!

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It is a word that is of paramount importance in the world of Sport. Form plays a major role in the career of a sportsman. The sporting world is a place where success is fleeting and transient. One moment, the athlete will be on top of the world, and a few months later, due to a loss of form, the same athlete would be in doldrums.

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Through the course of the last decade, one man who made every bowling attack look ordinary, who swatted aside batting records with nonchalance and gave countless headaches to captains around the world is Virat Kohli. Kohli’s march to the peak had been so dramatic, that at one point, we could not even imagine him failing with the willow.

Virat Kohli’s poor run in 2020

But then, what goes up must always come down. The law of averages is a wonderful concept in sport, and in life as well, and it catches up with you stealthily. Virat Kohli has had a quiet 2020 by his standards. The batting dynamite could not score a single international hundred in 2020, and his run tally in New Zealand was incredibly low by his standards.

Virat Kohli during the New Zealand tour early this year (Credits: Twitter/ BlackCaps)
Virat Kohli during the New Zealand tour early this year (Credits: Twitter/ photosport.nz)

Virat Kohli averaged  just 25.00 in the ODI series, and as if that was not enough, he aggregated just 38 runs in the entire Test series against the Kiwis, his lowest tally in a Test series in his entire career.

Whenever a player is going through the best phase of his career, or a low patch, one thing can come and turn the tides. A break. Even a drinks break in between overs can alter the concentration of a batsman. We have seen on many occasions when a batsman who looked so good in the previous session of a Test might gets dismissed in the very next session immediately.

It works the other way round as well. When the chips are down, when things are not going your way, the thing that can help you the most is a break.

Nonstop Cricket

It is no secret that the Indian team was playing nonstop cricket round the year. And in fact, the Indian side had finished an ODI series at home against Australia in January this year, and barely 5 days later, they were in the other corner of the world, in the land of the Kiwis, playing a totally different format(T20 cricket).

There was no time given to them to assimilate and adjust to the conditions. No time to even get a single practice game. The international calendar had become so packed.

In fact, the Indian skipper had expressed his displeasure about scheduling just before the New Zealand tour. This is what Virat Kohli had to say.

“Well it’s definitely getting closer and closer to landing at the stadium and playing straight. That’s how compressed the game has become but I think this kind of travel and coming to a place, which is seven hours ahead of India time, is always difficult to adjust to immediately. So, I am sure these things will be taken into consideration much more in the future, yeah it is what it is, you can do whatever you can to get better and get on the park again, and that’s international cricket for you today, it is back to back.”

Virat Kohli is one of the fittest guys on tour and he is one of the hungriest batsmen in terms of appetite for runs. But then, even for a man like Kohli, the international schedule was starting to take a toll on him. Kohli was indeed fatigued by the scheduling, and that might even be a factor for Kohli’s poor performance.

As per the schedule, the South Africa ODI series at home should have taken place a week later, followed by the high profile IPL. But then, the coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc across the world, and cricket has taken a backseat.

Twist of fate for Federer

The best example of how a break can do do wonders to the psyche of an athlete is best illustrated from the career of a tennis immortal.The period between 2013 and 2016 was probably the toughest for the iconic Roger Federer. For, the Swiss Maestro did not win a single Grand Slam in that period. Djokovic had emerged as the new monarch of the tennis world, and Federer was slowly relegated to the backseat.

And, Federer suffered a knee injury in 2016, and was out of action for almost six months, missing the US Open that year in the process. But then, the iconic Federer surprised the world when he made a sensational comeback in the Australian Open in 2017, by defeating rival Nadal in an epic final, and won a Grand Slam title after a gap of more than four years.

More than the physical front, the break would have refreshed Federer mentally. He came out as the child once more, enjoying hitting the tennis ball more than anything else.

A huge blessing for Virat Kohli

While on the face of it, it might seem that we are all robbed of our chance to witness our favourite cricketers in action, this might indeed be a blessing in disguise for someone like Kohli. A break might be the best way to refresh himself both mentally and physically.

Virat Kohli is a champion, and loves a challenge. And, the break inflicted due to the coronavirus pandemic might have just been a huge blessing for the batting maestro, and he will be waiting to come out all guns blazing.

So, don’t be surprised if Kohli once again starts wreaking havoc on the pitch when cricket resumes post the corona pandemic. For, this break might have just been the antidote that Virat Kohli needed.

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