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Virat Kohli - not just a run-monger

Virat Kohli - not just a run-monger

The team man in Kohli not just wants himself to do well but also see his mates contribute towards India's success.

India played two finals at the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 on Sunday - one that featured Virat Kohli and the other that the rest of his team-mates played.

The Man of the Tournament was on a different planet - not finding any demons in the track or any riddles in the Sri Lankan bowling. While his illustrious team-mates like Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni struggled to make contact, Kohli clenched fists at the other end, muttering a "come on" with every breath.

The team man in Kohli not just wants himself to succeed but also see his mates do well. That's why you see him frown at a misfield, snarl at a lax effort to grab a catch and grimace when his partner at the other end fails to rotate strike.

When Yuvraj struggled during his 21-ball 11 in the final last night, Kohli stood at the other end watching in agony as he failed to farm strike in the death overs. He scored more than half of the runs India managed (130), but what hurt the team man in Kohli was that India failed when it mattered the most.

And Kohli's demand for nothing less than 100 percent comes from his own performance. With 319 runs, he topped the World T20 batting charts and his 73 in the final stood out in an otherwise average show by India, which pressed an undo button on their five wins in a row en route the summit clash.

There's an inevitability about Kohli's success with the bat; his limited-overs record, especially chasing, leaves no room for debate. His hunger looks Tendulkaresque and the desire to do well unmatched at the moment.

The 25-year-old has hit 25 international hundreds (19 in ODIs and 6 in Tests) already and going quicker than Tendulkar at that age. He averages 46.51 in Tests, 52.16 in ODIs and 45.30 in T20s. No modern-day batsman matches that triangle.

Though it would be wrong to draw comparisons with Sachin Tendulkar's genius, Kohli's consistency takes you repeatedly in that direction. If God gifts him with Tendulkar's longevity to go with his consistency, ten years from now, we will be saying, "There can't be another Virat Kohli."

first published:April 07, 2014, 12:39 IST