• Tuesday , 22 Aug 2017
Published : 17 Jun 2017, 19:28:34AA-A+

Kohli is consummate surgeon at the crease: AB de Villiers

Online Desk
AB de Villiers, South Africa's ODI captain, was all praise for Virat Kohli as India's captain readies to deliver the goods for his side on yet another big day, something de Villiers self-admittedly rues missing being a part of.

"There are a few people who would love to be standing in Virat Kohli's shoes this weekend, leading their national team into the final of Champions Trophy, and there is no doubt the captain of India will be relishing the prospect of Sunday's final against Pakistan at The Oval," de Villiers wrote in his column for BBC.

Referring to Eoin Morgan, Kane Williamson and Steven Smith as "three great cricketers and captains," de Villiers only had words of empathy for them, especially after ouster from a tournament where the margin between victory and defeat is tiny.

"As South Africa captain, I know how they feel."

"He retains the invaluable ability to switch off from the game"

De Villiers and Kohli have been the batting fulcrum of Royal Challengers Bangalore for a while now, and while it remains to be seen what happens when the IPL teams are jigged around at the next auction, de Villiers offered a few unique insights into who Virat Kohli is off the field and behind the cameras.

"I have been privileged to play alongside him in the last six Indian Premier League tournaments and, as his team-mate at Royal Challengers Bangalore, have seen at first hand not only his extraordinary skill as a batsman but also the energy and intensity that he brings to the game.

"Unseen, he is determined and relentless in training, remaining in the nets as long as necessary to ensure he feels comfortable with every aspect of his game. I have watched him rehearse his strokes over and over again, until sweat is pouring from his brow, never stopping until he is satisfied.

"Intense and serious in matches and at practice, he retains the invaluable ability to switch off from the game, relaxing, laughing and joking at every opportunity," de Villiers wrote.

South Africa captain went on about how Kohli finds joy in little moments of frustration that could seemingly agitate others.

"He enjoys calling people by playful nicknames and he can find humour in almost every situation, even when we are spending hour after hour at another photo shoot, waiting for the photographer to be ready, then being told how and where to pose, then waiting some more, then being told we have to start the process all over again.

"While some of his team-mates are getting frustrated and struggling to be patient and composed, Virat will find something funny and deftly defuse the situation."

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