Dissecting Virat Kohli

Since the England tour, cricket bloggers and commentators have tried to understand what ails India’s vaunted batting line-up. Sriram Veera gives the best analysis I’ve seen of Virat Kohli, the latest member of the No. 6 club:

He was (is?) by his own admission a touch desperate to prove himself in Test cricket. “I probably started thinking too much about Test cricket, thinking it’s a huge, huge change. Maybe I shouldn’t have and should have been more relaxed. I should have taken all that (ODI) confidence into the first Test, and I should have gone in with the same approach…”

With Kohli, intent is key. The 50-over format provides him with that context, what to chase, a target to set, that helps him focus and fine-tune his game. The open-ended nature of Test cricket straitjackets him. Even in ODIs, it’s the chases he revels in more than batting first.

I’ve always had a difficult time understanding why great ODI batsmen have a tough time in Tests. There really shouldn’t be that big a problem adjusting to the change in format — David Warner and Virender Sehwag are examples — but I can see why the whole “bat without end” thing could be confusing.

What we see as spectators — scorecards, instant replays, pop analysis — is obviously different from the batsman’s reality in the middle, which revolves more around bowling spells, waiting for the new ball to age, judging the evolving character of the pitch, batting to the end of a session…Different ball game, as they say.


3 thoughts on “Dissecting Virat Kohli

  1. Thats an interesting perspective. It really is. ”Bat without end” is exactly whats troubling Kohli IMO! Kohli is immensely talented but needs to fine tune his game (5 day game), dat ofcourse can happen only if he plays enough tests. So, the only way out is by playing Kohli as much as we can! The more we expose him to the wear and tear of tests, better he will be!

  2. It also works the other way. I remember Michael Slater who should have been great in the shorter format but never was as he was in the test game.

    Happy new year and just want to let you know that my blog has changed address. It is now ‘The Wicket Post’ at http://www.thewicketpost.com/ . Do note the change and update your links and blogrolls. Thank you.

  3. Krishna says:

    He has only played one Test in India. And now on one of the toughest tours of all. Kohli does have a lot of potential to be a long-term Test player for India. I would actually think Test to ODI is a much more difficult transition, considering that you have to change your game depending on whether it is a PowerPlay or if you are nearing the end of your team’s innings. The statistics (generally lower averages in ODIs) prove this point,

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