‘When I saw Virat Kohli in nets, main aisa hairan hua’: Rashid Khan narrates jaw-dropping tale ahead of Asia Cup

Aug 25, 2022 01:11 PM IST

Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan narrated a fascinating story about India great Virat Kohli's determination ahead of Asia Cup 2022.

Afghanistan superstar Rashid Khan narrated an interesting story to highlight the greatness of Virat Kohli ahead of Asia Cup 2022. Rashid said during IPL 2022, he was completely taken aback by seeing Kohli's preparations on the eve of a Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Gujarat Titans match. Rashid, who plays for the Gujarat Titans, said the RCB batter was practising in the nets for about two and half hours even after the rest of the players had completed their entire training session.

Virat Kohli meets Rashid Khan in Dubai ahead of Asia Cup 2022
Virat Kohli meets Rashid Khan in Dubai ahead of Asia Cup 2022

"During the IPL, we had a match the next day against RCB. In the nets, I was just counting the time Virat was out there. To be honest, he batted for two and half hours. Main aisa hairan hua (I was so shocked). Our nets were finished and still, he was there batting. The next day he scored around 70 against us. His mindset is very positive," Rashid told sports presenter Sawera Pasha ahead of the Asia Cup.

Kohli ended up scoring 73 off 54 balls - his highest score in IPL 2022 - the next day to guide RCB to an easy eight-wicket win over Gujarat Titans by chasing down 169 in 18.4 overs.

Things, however, have not gone smoothly for Kohli of late. The former India captain has seen a drastic dip in form in Test cricket while his match-winning efforts in white-ball cricket have been too few and far in between in the last couple of years.

Rashid, however, said Kohli is not out-of-form. The Afghanistan leg-spinner said such is the expectation from Kohli that it appears that he has not scored for long but in reality he has been making useful contributions for side.

"Jab wo khelta hai toh aise shots khelta hai ki aap bologe ki bilkul out of form nahi hai. Main toh yahi bolunga that he is not out-of-form. (When he bats, he plays such wonderful shots that to me, he doesn't appear to be out-of-form at all). The expectations are much more. People want him to score a hundred every second game. If you look at his Test match innings, he has got through the tough time, batted well, then somehow he has gotten out for 50 or 60 or 70. If there was any other normal batter then everyone would have said that he is in form but with Virat the expectations are such that they only want centuries," Rashid said.

Kohli has returned to the Indian side for the Asia Cup starting August 27 after skipping the West Indies and Zimbabwe tours. He arrived in Dubai with the rest of the Indian squad on Tuesday evening and in his first net session on Wednesday, appeared to be in fine touch.

"Jitna meri usse baat hui hai. Uske mind mein kabhi aya nahi ki log kya kahenge ya unki expectations kya hai. (Whenever I have had a word with him he has made it clear that people's expectations don't really bother him) The way that he prepares, I think it is an example for all of us. We tend to get motivated and put in more effort after watching him practice. A certain time comes in your career when whatever you try, doesn't work. But we as fans, want him to score big runs and I'm sure the hundreds will also come," he added.

Rashid will be in action in the Asia Cup opener against Sri Lanka on Saturday while India start their campaign the next day against Pakistan in Dubai.

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