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Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team compared to ruthless All Blacks rugby team

Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team completed an amazing 9-0 sweep across formats whilst on tour in Sri Lanka, leading Sri Lanka interim head coach Nic Pothas to compare the side to the New Zealand rugby team.

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Sep 07, 2017 10:47 IST
N Ananthanarayanan
N Ananthanarayanan
Hindustan Times, Colombo
Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team have been compared to the All Blacks rugby team by Sri Lanka interim coach Nic Pothas.
Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team have been compared to the All Blacks rugby team by Sri Lanka interim coach Nic Pothas. (REUTERS)

Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team completed a 9-0 sweep across formats on their Sri Lanka tour, leaving the home team’s South African interim head coach in awe. (IND v SL match report)

India wrapped up the 47-day tour with a seven-wicket victory in the one-off Twenty20 tie at the Premadasa Stadium on Wednesday. It ended a perfect tour of the island, after India won the Test series 3-0 and then the ODI series 5-0. (IND v SL highlights)

Sri Lankan coach, Nic Pothas, had said during the series that he planned to talk to India’s coaches and replicate some of the methods in the Sri Lankan team to help arrest the current slide.

Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team team received the ultimate compliment when he was asked about it at the end of the series.

“When you look at the way they go about their work, and the culture that Virat has created within that team, it is very, very impressive. It will be a great compliment to him, but the fact is if you look at their team, they are very All-Black like,” Nic Pothas told the media.

The New Zealand rugby team is among the iconic sporting sides in the world, and Pothas praised India’s methods.

“There is a lot of respect for the facilities, there is a lot of respect for the opposition, they are very ruthless in the way they go about their work, and they don’t shirk. Their work ethic is immense. They are what a lot of teams aspire to be.”

India are already the No 1 Test side while they are third in the ICC ODI rankings with Australia, tied on ratings and behind only on points. India though are fifth in the T20 International rankings. Virat Kohli has declared becoming the finest fielding side as a mission for his team.

Pothas wants Sri Lanka to learn from India.

“First and foremost we must put everything in perspective. We must not look at the series in face value. We are a developing side, they are complete. So, you must look at the quality they have in that side. India are a side of immense quality for us to compete or beat them. We just have to compete a little more.

“It will be wrong of us not to learn from them. They do so many things very, very well. Most of them are just basics. You see how Virat runs between the wickets. See what respect he commands on the field as a leader, he pulls people with him.

Nic Pothas said he has had several conversations with Indian team physio, Patrick Farhart, to understand how things worked, especially to arrest a trend of players constantly getting injured.

“Patrick is a very close friend. I have spoken to him a lot, during dinner and coffee, etc. These guys are very busy as we are, and I will have to go to them in their leisure time, and I don’t want to do that. All the information I am looking for, questions I am asking, the answers I get from Paddy.

“Even if you hear from them what is going on, when you hear how it works, it is very, very impressive. But it is the discipline that is required across the board.”