Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli has a love for records and in the manner in which he has been getting them one by one is quite dazzling. The world’s number one batsman in the Test format, he knows how to get going in difficult conditions and scenarios.
After successive losses against England in the first two Tests, Kohli absorbed the challenge once again and shined with the bat which helped India win the 3rd Test at Nottingham.
Kohli went on to eclipse former Indian cricket skipper Sourav Ganguly’s record as he registered his 22nd Test victory as a captain. Under Ganguly’s captaincy, India had notched 21 Test wins. Kohli now will be looking to take one thing at a time and embrace records on the way.
Kohli is now India’s second most successful skipper behind MS Dhoni. The aggressive Kohli has many years to serve Indian cricket and is well in line to be the most successful and greatest skipper ever. If winning matches is on one side, then with the bat too he is still carving out feats like never before. What more can be said about the talisman of Indian cricket as he ushers new paths every time he sets out.
Here we celebrate Kohli’s feats as a skipper and as a player.
Kohli only behind Dhoni now
India’s most successful captain MS Dhoni has 27 Test wins. Kohli’s 22 sees him enjoy 13 wins at home and 9 away. This win is Kohli’s 2nd victory outside the subcontinent this year.
Former skipper Ganguly had 10 wins at home and 11 away. The 29-year-old Kohli needs 3 overseas wins to become the most successful Indian skipper away from home. Meanwhile, Dhoni had only 6 wins outside India.
Under Kohli, India is champion at home and it’s time he starts winning series outside the subcontinent. With two more Tests left against England, the win at Nottingham could spark a rare series win here. The question arises is whether his troops will fight valiantly enough to help the side get through?
Kohli following in Dada’s footsteps
Ganguly’s leadership skills were backed by the gift of players such as Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman and Virender Sehwag.
Dada knew how to back his side and get the team comes together. He didn’t have the bowlers Kohli enjoys now, but he got the best out of what he had.
Kohli too has set an environment where players enjoy playing under him. The mood is happy and there is a desire to do well and fight. Dada had once stated that Kohli is more aggressive than him, and we can rest assure ourselves that the desire and hunger have been big for both these fantastic ambassadors of leadership.
Kohli could be most successful ever
Meanwhile, MS had captained India in 60 matches. It looks like Kohli will surpass Dhoni’s record in the near future to become the most successful Indian captain ever. And the feat could be well achieved well below that figure of Dhoni.
One must actually credit MSD for shaping Kohli as a skipper and helping him immensely back during recent years. Dhoni’s leadership is a touch different from Dada and Kohli, but like the two, MS was a brilliant personality. One can say his hold was more in the limited-overs. After all, he won everything as a skipper that was on offer in both T20Is and ODI cricket.
Kohli overtook Dada here as well
With another scintillating inning (103) in the 2nd innings, Kohli now has 1,834 runs away from home.
And Kohli could have a few more
Over generations, a few visiting cricketers have scored runs aplenty on English soil in a single Test series. Sir Donald Bradman (974 and 758 runs) ruled English bowlers like no other batsmen in the history of cricket. He was the epitome for Australia in the Ashes.
West Indians Vivian Richards (829), Gary Sobers (722) and Brian Lara (765) were successful against Englishmen, as well. In Richards and Sobers’ time, Windies pummelled the English sides.
Then there was Australian southpaw Mark Taylor. He amassed 839 runs in 1989 across 6 Tests. South Africa’s Graeme Smith had 714 runs across 5 Tests. Pakistan’s Mohammad Yousuf had 631 runs in a single series as well.
The question here lies can Kohli join these elite cricketers? Kohli has amassed 440 runs across three Tests so far. He has hit two centuries already beside slamming two fifties as well. With two more Tests remaining and Kohli enjoying the form of his life, he can get closer.