The long and tedious wait for Virat Kohli’s 75th international century dragged on for past two and half years. Since he has scored his last international century, Kohli became a father, forsook captaincy, and the halo around his batting has just begun to fade.
Former India captain Kapil Dev has lashed out at Virat Kohli’s poor run of form.
“I haven’t played cricket as much as Virat Kohli. But sometimes you may not have played enough cricket but you can look to figure things out. Either that, or we just cannot criticise such great players. We have played cricket and we understand the game and after that, they have to improve their thought process, not ours. If you prove us wrong, we will like it,” the legendary all-rounder said on Uncut.
“If you don’t score runs, we feel there is some fault. We just see one thing and that’s your performance. And if the performance is not there, don’t expect people to stay quiet. Your bat and your performance should speak, nothing else,” he added.
Kapil feels the lack of runs from the Virat Kohli’s bat is a big concern for Indian cricket.
“It pains me to see such a big player go through this a long gap (with regards to a century). He is like a hero to us. We never thought we would witness a player whom we can compare to Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Sunil Gavaskar, and Virender Sehwag. But then they came, and forced us to compare and now since he hasn’t for the last two years, it is bothering me and all of us,” Kapil said.
Former India head coach Ravi Shastri, on the other hand, suggested that an “overcooked” Kohli needed a break. A relentless bubble life has its downside and like Shastri had said after the last year’s T20 World Cup: “I don’t care who you are, if your name is Bradman, if you’re in a bubble as well, your average will come down because you’re human.”
Kohli is not averse to taking a break to allow himself a “mental reset”. “There’s one person precisely who has mentioned it which is Ravi bhai and that’s because he has seen from close quarters over the last six-seven years the reality of the situation that I have been in. The amount of cricket that I have played and the ups and downs and the toll that it takes on you to play three formats of the game plus the IPL for 10-11 years non-stop with the seven years of captaincy in between,” he had told Star Sports in an interview.
At present, Kohli is playing the tour game Leicester, where he got out on 33 in the first innings. India will play the fifth and the last Test match at Edgbaston, starting from July 1. India is leading the five-match Test series by 2-1.