I've got out in every possible way: Kohli

I've got out in every possible way: Kohli

I've got out in every possible way: Kohli

Virat Kohli has been marked to take over the reins of Indian cricket team in future is, perhaps, one of the worst kept secrets in the game’s circles.

In the few chances – 11 matches in all – he got to lead India, Kohli has done well, both as skipper and batsman. The highest point probably was his match-winning 136 against Bangladesh in the Asia Cup in February this year.

On all these occasions Kohli was doing the stand-in duty for MS Dhoni, and the tenure of his job was not extended beyond a match or a tournament. So, does he have the aptitude to do the job for a longer term – keeping his head equally calm in wins and defeats?

This edition of the IPL showed a glimpse into his mindset, and it was fascinating too. Expected to cruise through the league stages, the Royal Challengers experienced a rather modest run and they even lost two matches at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, usually their safe haven.

But Kohli has kept his composure under trying circumstances. “There is a lot to learn when you go through auctions and the team owners pick the team that they want and when the results don't go your way obviously you feel disappointed. Honestly, it's been very frustrating in the past few games. We wanted to do the right things but it would go wrong at crucial times for us,” Kohli admitted.

That he was not among runs too might have added to the burden, and Kohli opined that it has only helped to mature as a person.

“I was captain last year also, so that's not the pressure I am taking. I got out in every possible way this season and the only thing that is left is hit-wicket. I am mature enough to take these things in my stride now. People are going to say a lot of things and pull me down. But I am more relaxed now. I know guys are stepping up, and that gives you a bit of cushion.”

Backing steadfastly

Kohli’s desire too played its part in Royal Challengers acquiring Yuvraj Singh in the auction for a high price. Yuvraj’s stuttering run in the initial phase of the tournament increased the cries to exclude him from the playing eleven, but Kohli continued to back his senior steadfastly. Kohli was quite happy that his move finally fetched the desired results.

“Glad that someone like Yuvraj has stood up and lot of people had written him off which I think should never happen to any cricketer because you never know when someone comes back. The way Yuvi has come back, we got to respect what a world-class player he has been for India.

“He has won us two World Cups single-handedly and it's all about respecting that person who has served the country for so long. I am really glad to see him stepping up at crucial times for RCB,” said Kohli.
Kohli also showed his proactive side as a skipper during a tough phase for RCB. He tried to tackle those situations through change of approach and personnel, and of course, the success of those strategies are a different matter altogether.

But just like a confident leader, Kohli has taken it in his strides. “We tried to stick to the same team as much as possible. After the last game we just wanted to give the bowlers a bit of mental rest because it is very hard to come back from a game like that (against Rajasthan Royals).

“Like I said sometimes results don't go your way and it can be frustrating and you tend to try a few different things. But that’s the nature of cricket.”
Is that a first glimpse of a mature leader?