Always aiming to be the best in the business since his early days, India captain Virat Kohli says he very well knew that he has to consistently perform in all three formats of the game to realise his dream.
Kohli, who won the the Polly Umrigar award for BCCI’s International Cricketer of the Year at the Cricket Board’s annual awards in Bangalore on Wednesday, said he always wanted to be one of the top players in the world.
“I always wanted to be one of the top players in the world for sure. So I understood what it would take for me to maintain my form in all three formats. It is very important in transition phase to be available in all three formats and take the country forward,” Kohli said.
Kohli also took a dig at his detractors and said he always believed in his abilities although there were many doubters around him.
“All along in my career, there were many people who had doubted the way I have gone about my game. Even now there are doubters and haters all around, but one thing is for sure that I have always believed in myself,” he said.
“I always believed in my heart that if I work 120 per cent everyday in my life I am answerable to no one.” Kohli on Wednesday also became the first first Indian cricketer to receive the Polly Umrigar award for the third time.
Hailing his teammates for their support and contribution in helping India reach the pinnacle of Test cricket, Kohli said the last 12 months have been a breakthrough year in his career.
“It is been quite unbelievable in the last 10 to 12 months. As cricketers you always have a breakthrough year for everyone. Starting late 2015 to the end of 2016, probably I could term is as the breakthrough year in my career. All the hard work, all the training on a daily basis, all the sacrifices, came together nicely. It could not have been possible without the help of the teammates throughout,” he said.
“At times you don’t do well but when the champion players in your side step up and everyone delivers what when you start producing results.
“That is why we are the top side in the world at the moment, and it is testimony to the kind of talent we have in the team and how players have stepped up on occasions which helped the team pull through different situations. I thank my teammates for their support, trust and effort,” Kohli said.
The Indian skipper said the mantra behind the team’s success in the last one year is it’s care-free attitude and belief.
“We play with a kind of attitude, we don’t care about what happens outside that change-room door,” Kohli said.
“That is the attitude I have adopted since late 2015 when I stopped putting pressure on myself. I told myself I am working hard enough, I have the talent and I have the ability. I am going to go and express myself, but if I get an opportunity I make sure that I win games,” he added.
Kohli also thanked the Cricket Board (BCCI) for giving an opportunity to lead the Indian team.
“I am thankful to BCCI for the kind of position it has put me in. I take this as an opportunity. I don’t take this as a job. It is an opportunity and a responsibility. I need to do right things, set right examples and follow certain path that the whole team believes in,” he said.
Talking about the 75-run come-back-win over Australia in the second cricket Test here, Kohli said the series-levelling victory was a very special one.
“It was good that we came back in the game. We were all sticking together. That (win) was very special and one of the best I have been part of,” he said.