Virat Kohli’s journey to the top of the tree among batsmen across the world has been witnessed at close quarters by Royal Challengers Bangalore coach Daniel Vettori. Vettori joined the RCB camp in 2011 when Kohli was taking slow steps towards greatness. Impressed by what he has seen so far, the Kiwi spinner also revealed that he has found two sides of Kohli as a captain – one which has the passion to win at all costs and the other off the field – where he is receptive to information. Stating that Kohli has set the benchmark for others to follow, Vettori maintained that it is virtually impossible to appreciate the magnitude of his role.
Speaking to Wisden India, the former New Zealand spinner said, “The thing I have found with Virat in particular as a captain – and obviously there’s two sides to it… There is the passion – to do whatever he can to win on game day on the field. He is very keen to win on the field on game day. And then off the field, he is very receptive to information, he is very receptive to listening and wanting to learn. He wants to get better as well as having his own thoughts on everything that is going on in the game of cricket. None of us can really appreciate the magnitude of his role and the pressure that is on him and how exhausting some of the schedule is. But he manages it better than anyone I have ever seen.”
“There is a passion for cricket. If you sit down with Virat, you are talking cricket most of the time. He loves the game and that’s the thing that keeps the passion going. Also, his personal success and his team’s success. But if you have an innate love for the game, it gets you through everything. I think that’s the point where he is at. He obviously wants to be the best in the world, he’s got the talent to do it but he has backed it up with intensity and also the desire to keep improving. That comes from a genuine love of the game.”
“The main thing is that they are all trying it (the Kohli way), seeing if it works for them,” he pointed out. “That’s professional sports across the world, athletes at their absolute peak. I think the example is great and a lot of the guys are following that example. They just have to find what their own levels are but I don’t think you’d ever want to deny them trying to get to that level.”