Full profile of India star Virat Kohli, including career milestones and records
All you need to know about the prolific batsman and inspirational India captain
Full name: Virat Kohli
Date of birth: November 5, 1988
Place of birth: Delhi, India
Role: Top order batsman
Teams represented: Delhi, India Under-19s, India Red, India, Royal Challengers Bangalore
Test debut: Against West Indies, Jamaica, June 20, 2011
ODI debut: Against Sri Lanka, Dambulla, August 18, 2008
T20 debut: Against Zimbabwe, Harare, June 12, 2010
Milestones: 2011 World Cup winner. Fastest to 8,000, 9,000, 10,000 and 11,000 runs in ODIs. Only batsman to average more than 50 in all three formats. Most double tons in Tests as captain
Honours: Padma Shri (India’s fourth highest civilian award) in 2017, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna (highest sporting award in the country) in 2018, ICC Cricketer of the Year in 2017 and 2018
Arguably the greatest all-round batsman of this generation and one of the finest of all time. There are two distinct halves in Kohli’s career – the first where he struggled to cope with the sudden stardom and pressure, and the second where he reinvented himself, made fitness the driving force behind his cricket and took his game to a level never before seen.
Kohli is so much more than the runs, centuries and wins. He has become the undisputed king of cricket, injecting life into the global game and raising the profile of Test cricket at a time when T20 cricket was threatening to take over completely.
It was clear early on that Kohli was destined for greatness. He lost his father when he was 18. The tragedy struck during his team Delhi’s first-class match against Karnataka in 2006. After completing the final rites, Kohli returned to the ground and scored a match-saving 90 in the second innings.
His international career had a slow start. Kohli struggled to cement his spot in the team until around 2010. He found form just in time for the 2011 World Cup, was included in India’s playing XI and scored a century in his first World Cup game – against Bangladesh. He featured in every game as the men in blue lifted the 50-over title.
The next year, Kohli made a career-defining decision to revamp his fitness regime and make it the focal point of his cricket. Kohli quickly turned into a fitness fanatic and set the benchmark for aspiring cricketers in India and across the world.
Success on the field followed soon after as Kohli became an ODI batting behemoth, mastering the art of securing wins in a chase. He first became Test captain in 2014. But it was only by 2017 that Kohli became captain across all formats. The Kohli era had started and he brought about a complete change in team culture, with emphasis on fitness, fast bowlers and attitude.
It is getting difficult to keep up with the number of records that Kohli has broken over the last few years. He is the only batsman to average more than 50 in all three formats, has already scored 70 international centuries by the age of 31 and seems well on his way to breaking every major batting record.
Under his reign, India have become the No1 Test team in the world with Kohli one of the most successful Test captains of all time – 33 victories with a win percentage of 62. But there are a few missing pieces – victory in a major tournament as captain and Test series wins in England and South Africa being the main ones.
If Kohli manages to tick off the final few boxes, he will finish his career as the greatest player and captain India has produced.
Published: January 13, 2020 08:16 AM