Virat Kohli has got a new admirer for his on-field aggression in none other than legendary West Indian batsman Vivian Richards who described the new captain as one of those very few Indian cricketers who do not shy away from having a verbal fight with opposition players.
Kohli has frustrated Australia during the first three Tests of the Border-Gavaskar trophy, smashing 499 runs — including three centuries — at an average of 83.2, while also having some run-ins with a few Australian players.
“I love that man. People have got to understand that this game has changed quite a bit. Regardless of how good you are, you’re going to have guys coming at you. You’re going to have stuff being said,” Richards said.
“As long as it’s said in the best of manners, I don’t think it’s going to be too disruptive to that particular individual. When you have that sort of stuff, to me it always brings the best out of any individual. If you are up with your game and ahead of your game, for some reason you can respond,” he told 3AW radio station.
“A little confrontation sometimes helps the game in a big way.”
Richards said he has no problems for a player like Kohli who has backed up his recent verbal stoushes by producing big scores this series.
“Some of the past Indian teams would have crumbled with some of the stuff that’s been said. But Virat Kohli is one of those modern-day players who’s a little bull-terrier in his own right,” Richards said.
“If you look at the scores he’s amassed, it shows you he enjoys the contest. To come out smelling sweet at the end of it, it’s a good feeling,” said the former West Indies captain.