That’s why he gets the great tag: Ex-Pakistan captain compares Virat Kohli with Javed Miandad
Aamer Sohail, who was Pakistan’s one of the most successful openers, said much like Javed Miandad, Virat Kohli’s greatness rubs off on his teammates.Updated: Jun 08, 2020 13:37 IST
India captain Virat Kohli has been compared with the legendary Sachin Tendulkar for a long time now. His consistency in all formats and run-scoring abilities has made Kohli one of the front-runners to challenge Sachin’s towering numbers in international cricket. Kohli’s mastery in chasing totals and nonchalantly hit fast bowlers in limited-overs cricket has made some greats like Ian Chappell compare him with Viv Richards too. Among current cricketers, Kohli has always drawn comparisons with Australia’s Steve Smith. But on Sunday, former Pakistan captain Aamer Sohail added a new chapter in Kohli’s career by comparing him with legendary Pakistan batsman Javed Miandad.
Sohail, who was Pakistan’s one of the most successful openers, said much like Miandad, Kohli’s greatness rubs off on his teammates.
“The most important point for me is that big players break out. They are individually great, but their greatness does not help the team at all. When you talk about Pakistan’s cricket history and its greatness, the first name that comes to mind is Javed Miandad.
Also Watch | Roger Federer challenges Virat Kohli: Watch tennis ace’s home training dare
“His greatness is still talked about to this day because he used to raise the level of play of the rest of the team. When you stitch a long partnership with him, you used to learn so much, and get inspired that you want to improve more. This is what Kohli has done as well. If you look around Kohli, every player has improved alongside him and this is why Kohli gets the tag of a great player,” Sohail said on his YouTube channel.
Miandad, who played 124 Tests and 233 ODIs in an international career spanning close to two decades, was among the finest batsmen to have represented Pakistan. He scored 8832 runs an average of 52.57 in Test cricket and in ODIs he had 7381 runs at an average of 41.70.
Kohli, on the other hand, has already scored 70 international hundreds and more than 21 thousand international runs – 7240 in Tests, 11867 in ODIs and 2021 in T20Is. The India captain averages over 50 in all three formats of the game.
Sohail also went on to explain the reason behind Kohli’s greatness.
“Let me explain why Virat Kohli has become a great player? When he burst onto the scene, he was flamboyant, aggressive, and liked to team up with life. Very quickly, he realised that I need to separate my professional life with my personal life. That really benefited him.”
“The guidance he received after that you need to do away with certain things to become a consistent player for India - and he did so. He improved his defensive technique. When he got a chance to play for India in 2008, and then when he made a move to T20I in 2010, and then he made his debut in 2011 - during this time he found his game. He realised what were his strengths, and how he needs to take them forward. He also realised what was his weakness, and how can he improve upon it, or camouflage it. He kept improving his game, and he dominated in world cricket.”
Sohail said Kohli’s passion and determination have made him one of the best cricketers in the modern era and added that it arises from Kohli’s respect for the game, his fans, and his country. “But here are four major reasons I believe why he became a great player. The first point is passion and determination. An average player, when they represent their country, they are happy with the performances as long as they can stay in the team. They are just satisfied with that.
“But great players do not let their passion and determination deteriorate. This cannot be taught, this comes from within when you respect the game, your fans, and the colours that you wear and the country you represent,” he said.
Sohail stressed on Kohli’s desire to always become a better player is the second reason why he is a great cricketer.
“The second point is to desire to become a better player and be coachable - this is what has been seen in Kohli. In the beginning, he used to hit shots. But then he was told that you have to play like this, so he realised himself and kept on improving. His adaptability has come because of this. In different countries, with different bowling attack, in different situations, he has different trigger movements all the time. He uses his footwork accordingly. He has dominated every bowling line-up in the world,” he added.
“When you play like this, it makes a player ready to accept challenges. This is why Virat Kohli’s mental toughness is increasing,” Sohail further added.