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Virat Kohli Biography – The King of Indian International Cricket

Virat Kohli is an Indian international cricketer and former captain of the Indian national team. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time in limited-overs cricket. Kohli plays as a right-handed batsman for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL and for Delhi in Indian domestic cricket.

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Real Name: Virat Kohli
Profession: Indian international cricketer
Birthplace: New Delhi, India
Nickname: Cheeku
Age: 34

Virat Kohli (born 5 November 1988) is an Indian international cricketer and former captain of the Indian national team. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time in limited-overs cricket. Kohli plays as a right-handed batsman for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL and for Delhi in Indian domestic cricket. He holds the record for scoring the most runs in both T20 internationals and IPL. In 2020, the International Cricket Council named him a player of the decade. Kohli has also contributed to India’s successes, including winning the 2011 World Cup and the 2013 Champions trophy.

Born and raised in Delhi, Kohli trained at West Delhi Cricket Academy; started his youth career with the Delhi Under-15 team. Kohli made his international debut in 2008 and quickly became a key player in the ODI team. He made his Test debut in 2011. In 2013, Kohli reached the number-one spot in the ICC rankings for ODI batsmen for the first time. During the 2014 T20 World Cup, he set a record for the most runs scored in the tournament. In 2018, Kohli became the number one ranked Test batsman, making him the only Indian batsman to achieve the top spot in the ICC rankings in all three formats. Kohli stepped down as captain of the T20I team in 2021 and the Test team in early 2022.

Kohli is considered a prolific batsman and run-scorer. He has won the Man of the Tournament award twice at the ICC World Twenty20, in 2014 and 2016. Playing for his franchise in IPL, he won the Orange Cap and Most-valuable Player Award in the 2016 season. He has also won most player of the match and series awards in T20I. With 40 wins in 68 Test matches, Kohli is India’s most successful Test captain.

Virat Kohli Biography
Virat Kohli Biography

Kohli has received many accolades for his performances on the cricket field. He was recognized as the ICC ODI Player of the Year in 2012 and has won the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy, given to the ICC Cricketer of the Year, on two occasions, in 2017 and 2018. Kohli also won the ICC Test Player of the Year and ICC ODI Player of the Year awards in 2018, becoming the first player to win both awards in the same year. Additionally, Kohli was named the Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World for three consecutive years, from 2016 to 2018. At the national level, Kohli was honored with the Arjuna Award in 2013, the Padma Shri under the sports category in 2017, and the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award, India’s highest sporting honor, in 2018.

In 2016, he was ranked as one of the world’s most famous athletes by ESPN and one of the most valuable athlete brands by Forbes. In 2018, Time magazine included him on its list of the 100 most influential people in the world. In 2020, he was ranked 66th in the Forbes list of the top 100 highest-paid athletes in the world for the year 2020 with estimated earnings of over $26 million.

Virat Kohli Biography
Personal information
Born 5 November 1988 (age 34)
New Delhi, India
Nickname Cheeku
Height 5 ft 9 in (175 cm)
Batting Right-handed
Bowling Right-arm medium
Role Top-order batsman
Relations Anushka Sharma (wife)
International information
National side
  • India (2008–present)
Test debut (cap 269) 20 June 2011 v West Indies
Last Test 22 December 2022 v Bangladesh
ODI debut (cap 175) 18 August 2008 v Sri Lanka
Last ODI 15 January 2023 v Sri Lanka
ODI shirt no. 18
T20I debut (cap 31) 12 June 2010 v Zimbabwe
Last T20I 10 November 2022 v England
T20I shirt no. 18
Domestic team information
Years Team
2006–present Delhi
2008–present Royal Challengers Bangalore
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI T20I FC
Matches 104 268 115 136
Runs scored 8,119 12,754 4,008 10,368
Batting average 48.90 58.23 52.73 50.08
100s/50s 27/28 46/64 1/37 34/36
Top score 254* 183 122* 254*
Balls bowled 175 641 152 643
Wickets 4 4 3
Bowling average 166.25 51.00 112.66
5 wickets in innings
10 wickets in the match
Best bowling 1/15 1/13 1/19
Catches/stumpings 104/– 139/– 50/– 135/–
Medal record
Men’s Cricket
Representing  India
World Cup
Winner 2011 India–Bangladesh–Sri Lanka
T20 World Cup
Runner-up 2014 Bangladesh
ICC World Test Championship
Runner-up 2021 England (Final)
Source: ESPN Cricinfo, 15 January 2023
Signature
Virat Kohli Signature.jpg

Early life (Virat Kohli Biography)

Virat Kohli was born on 5 November 1988 in Delhi to a Punjabi Hindu family. His father, Prem Kohli, worked as a criminal lawyer and his mother, Saroj Kohli, is a housewife. He has an older brother, Vikas, and an older sister, Bhavna. According to his family, when he was three years old, Kohli would pick up a cricket bat, start swinging it and ask his father to bowl at him.

Kohli was raised in Uttam Nagar and started his schooling at Vishal Bharti Public School. In 1998, the West Delhi Cricket Academy was created and a nine-year-old Kohli was part of its first intake. Kohli’s father took him to the academy after their neighbors suggested that “Virat shouldn’t waste his time in gully cricket and instead join a professional club”. Kohli trained at the academy under his coach Rajkumar Sharma and also played matches at the Sumeet Dogra Academy at Vasundhara Enclave at the same time. Sharma recounts Kohli’s early days at his academy, “He oozed talent. It was so difficult to keep him quiet. He was a natural in whatever he did and I was most impressed with his attitude. He was ready to bat at any spot, and I had to literally push him home after the training sessions. He just wouldn’t leave.” In ninth grade, Kohli shifted to Saviour Convent School in Paschim Vihar to advance his cricket practice. His family lived in Meera Bagh until 2015 when they moved to Gurgaon.

Kohli’s father died on 18 December 2006 due to a stroke after being bedridden for a month. According to Kohli, his father supported his cricket training during his childhood, “My father was my biggest support. He was the one who drove me to practice every day. I miss his presence sometimes.” His mother noted that:

Virat changed a bit after that day. Overnight he became a much more matured person. He took every match seriously. He hated being on the bench. It’s as if his life hinged totally on cricket after that day. Now, he looked like he was chasing his father’s dream which was his own too.

Youth and domestic career (Virat Kohli Biography)

Virat Kohli Biography
Virat Kohli Biography

Delhi

Kohli first played for the Delhi Under-15 team in October 2002 in the 2002–03 Polly Umrigar Trophy. He was the leading run-scorer for his team in that tournament with 172 runs at an average of 34.40. He became the captain of the team for the 2003–04 Polly Umrigar Trophy; scored 390 runs in 5 innings at an average of 78 including two centuries and two fifties. In late 2004, Kohli got selected for the Delhi Under-17 team for the 2004–05 Vijay Merchant Trophy. He scored 470 runs in four matches at an average of 117.50 with two hundred and a top score of 251* in that tournament. Delhi Under-17s won the next year’s Vijay Merchant Trophy in which Kohli finished as the highest run-scorer with 757 runs from 7 matches at an average of 84.11 that included two centuries.

In April 2007, Kohli made his T20 debut and finished as the highest run-getter for his team in the Inter-State T20 Championship with 179 runs at an average of 35.80. In September 2008, Kohli played in Nissar Trophy against SNGPL (winners of the Quaid-i-Azam Trophy from Pakistan) and top-scored for Delhi in both innings, with 52 and 197. The match was drawn but SNGPL won the trophy on the first-inning lead.

India Under-19

In July 2006, Kohli was selected for the India Under-19 squad on its tour of England. He averaged 105 in the three-match ODI series against England Under-19s and 49 in the three-match Test series. India Under-19 went on to win both series. At the conclusion of the tour, India Under-19 coach Lalchand Rajput was impressed with Kohli and said, “Kohli showed strong technical skills against both pace and spin”. In September, the India Under-19 team toured Pakistan. Kohli averaged 58 in the Test series and 41.66 in the ODI series against Pakistan Under-19s.

In June 2008, Kohli and his Under-19 teammates Pradeep Sangwan and Tanmay Srivastava were awarded the Border-Gavaskar scholarship. The scholarship allowed the three players to train for six weeks at Cricket Australia’s Centre of Excellence in Brisbane. Kohli was also picked in the squad of India Emerging Players for the four-team Emerging Players Tournament; scored 206 runs in six matches at an average of 41.20.

International career (Virat Kohli Biography)

2008–2009: Debut and maiden stint

In August 2008, Kohli was included in the Indian ODI squad for a tour of Sri Lanka and the Champions Trophy in Pakistan. Prior to the Sri Lankan tour, Kohli had played only eight List A matches. So, his selection was called a “surprise call-up”. During the Sri Lankan tour, as both first-choice openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag were injured, Kohli batted as a makeshift opener throughout the series. He made his international debut at the age of 19 in the first ODI of that tour and was dismissed for 12 runs. In the same series, he scored his first ODI half-century, a score of 54 in the fourth match.

Kohli, after recovering from a minor shoulder injury, returned to the national team replacing the injured Gautam Gambhir in the Indian squad for the tri-series in Sri Lanka. He batted at number 4 for India in the 2009 ICC Champions Trophy as Yuvraj Singh suffered from an injury. In December 2009, he was included in the team for the home ODI series against Sri Lanka and scored 27 and 54 in the first two ODIs before making way for Yuvraj who regained fitness for the third ODI. However, Yuvraj’s finger injury reoccurred, leading him to be ruled out indefinitely. Kohli returned to the team in the fourth ODI at Kolkata and scored his maiden ODI century–107 off 114 balls–sharing a 224-run partnership for the third wicket with Gambhir. India won by seven wickets to seal the series 3–1.

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2010–2011: Rise through the ranks

Tendulkar was rested for the tri-nation ODI tournament in Bangladesh in January 2010, which enabled Kohli to play in each of India’s five matches. During this series, he became only the third Indian batsman to score two ODI centuries before their 22nd birthday. Kohli was much praised for his performances during the series; became the leading run-scorer of the series with 275 runs from five innings at an average of 91.66.

Kohli played in every match of India’s successful World Cup campaign. He scored an unbeaten 100 in the first match against Bangladesh and became the first Indian batsman to score a century on his World Cup debut. In the final against Sri Lanka in Mumbai, he scored 35, sharing an 83 runs partnership with Gambhir for the third wicket after India had lost both openers within seven overs while chasing 275.

Breakthrough in Test cricket

When India toured the West Indies in June–July 2011, they selected a largely inexperienced squad, resting Tendulkar while others such as Gambhir and Sehwag missed out due to injuries. Kohli was one of three uncapped players in the Test squad. Kohli made his Test debut at Kingston in the first match of the Test series that followed. He batted at 5th position and was dismissed on scores of 4 and 15, caught behind off the bowling of Fidel Edwards in both innings. India went on to win the Test series 1–0 but Kohli amassed just 76 runs from five innings, struggling against the short ball.

During a tour of Australia in December 2011, Kohli failed to go past 25 in the first two Tests, as his defensive technique was exposed. While fielding on the boundary during the second day of the second match at Sydney, he gestured to the crowd with his middle finger for which he was fined 50% of his match fee by the match referee. He top-scored in each of India’s innings in the third Test at Perth with scores of 44 and 75, even as India got their second consecutive innings defeat. In the fourth and final match at Adelaide, Kohli scored his maiden Test century, 116 runs in the first innings. India suffered a 0–4 whitewash and Kohli, India’s top run-scorer in the series was described as “the lone bright spot in an otherwise nightmare visit for the tourists”.

2012–2013: ODI ascendancy and ascension to vice-captaincy

In the first seven matches of the Commonwealth Bank triangular series that India played against hosts Australia and Sri Lanka, Kohli made two fifties–77 at Perth and 66 at Brisbane, both against Sri Lanka. Being set a target of 321 by Sri Lanka, Kohli came to the crease with India’s score at 86/2 and went on to score 133 not out from 86 balls to take India to a comfortable win with 13 overs to spare. India earned a bonus point with the win and Kohli was named Man of the Match for his knock. Former Australian cricketer and commentator Dean Jones rated Kohli’s innings as “one of the greatest ODI knocks of all time”. However, Sri Lanka beat Australia three days later in their last group fixture and knocked India out of the series. With 373 runs at 53.28, Kohli finished as India’s highest run-scorer and lone centurion of the series.

In June 2013, Kohli featured in the ICC Champions Trophy in England which India won. He scored 144 against Sri Lanka in a warm-up match. He scored moderately in India’s group matches against South Africa, West Indies, and Pakistan respectively. In sync India qualified for the semi-finals with an undefeated record. In the semi-final against Sri Lanka at Cardiff, he struck 58* in an eight-wicket win for India. The final between India and England at Birmingham was reduced to 20 overs after a rain delay. India batted first and Kohli top-scored with 43 from 34 balls, helping India reach 129/7 in 20 overs. India went on to secure a five-run win and their second consecutive ICC ODI tournament victory. Kohli was also named part of the ‘Team of the Tournament’ by the ICC.

Setting records and post-Tendulkar era

Kohli stood in as the captain for the first ODI of the triangular series in the West Indies after Dhoni injured himself during the match; Kohli was named the captain for the remaining matches. In his second match as captain, Kohli scored his first century as captain, making 102 off 83 balls against the West Indies at Port of Spain in a bonus point win for India. Many senior players including Dhoni were rested for the five-match ODI tour of Zimbabwe in July 2013. Kohli was therefore appointed as the captain for an entire series. In the first game of the series at Harare, he struck 115 runs from 108 balls, helping India chase down the target of 229 and winning the man of the match award. India completed a 5–0 sweep of the series; they’re first in an away ODI series. India toured South Africa in December 2013 for three ODIs and two Tests. Kohli averaged 15.50 in the ODIs including a duck. In the first Test at Johannesburg, playing his first Test in South Africa and batting at 4 for the first time, Kohli scored 119 and 96. His hundred was the first by a subcontinent batsman at the venue since 1998. The match ended in a draw and Kohli was awarded man of the match. India failed to win a single match on the tour, losing the second Test by 10 wickets in which he made 46 and 11.

2014: T20 World Cup and assuming Test-captaincy

During the New Zealand tour, he averaged 58.21 in the five-match ODI series in which his all efforts went in vain as India was defeated 4–0. He made 214 runs at 71.33 in the two-match Test series that followed including an unbeaten 105 on the last day of the second Test at Wellington that helped India save the match.

Dhoni returned to the team as captain for the second match at Brisbane where Kohli scored 19 and 1 in a four-wicket defeat for India. In the Melbourne Boxing Day Test, he made his personal best Test score(of that time) of 169 in the first innings while sharing a 262 runs partnership with Rahane, India’s biggest partnership outside Asia in ten years. Kohli followed it with a score of 54 in India’s second innings on the fifth day helping his team draw the Test match. Dhoni announced his retirement from Test cricket at the conclusion of this match and Kohli was appointed as the full-time Test captain ahead of the fourth Test at Sydney. Captaining the Test team for the second time, Kohli hits 147 runs in the first innings of the match and became the first batsman in Test cricket history to score three hundred in his first three innings as Test captain. He was dismissed for 46 in the second innings and the match ended in a draw. Kohli’s total of 692 runs in four Tests is the most by any Indian batsman in a Test series in Australia.

2015–2016: World Cups and limited-over success

In January 2015, India failed to win a single match in the tri-nation ODI series against the hosts Australia and England. Kohli was unable to replicate his Test success in ODIs, failing to make a two-digit score in any of the four games. Kohli’s ODI form did not improve in the lead-up to the World Cup, with scores of 18 and 5 in the warm-up matches against Australia and Afghanistan respectively.

Playing his first Test in the West Indies since his debut series, Kohli scored 200 in the first Test at Antigua to ensure an innings-and-92-run win for India, their biggest win ever outside of Asia. It was his first double hundred in first-class cricket and the first made away from home by an Indian captain in Tests. India went on to wrap the series 2–0 and briefly top the ICC Test Rankings before being displaced by Pakistan at the position. He scored another double hundred, 211 at Indore in the third Test against New Zealand as India’s 3–0 whitewash victory saw them regain the top position in the ICC Test Rankings.

2017–2018: Dominant batting and leadership

Kohli got double centuries in the next two Test series against England and Bangladesh, making him the first batsman ever to score double centuries in four consecutive series. He broke the record of Australian great Donald Bradman and Rahul Dravid, both of whom had managed to get three. Against England, he scored his then-highest Test score of 235.

Virat Kohli got the chance to captain an ICC tournament for the first time in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy. In the semi-final against Bangladesh, Kohli scored 96* and became the fastest batsman in terms of innings to reach 8,000 runs in ODIs in 175 innings. India reached the final but lost to Pakistan by 180 runs. In the third over of the Indian innings, Virat Kohli was dropped in the slips for just five runs but caught the next ball by Shadab Khan at a point on the bowling of Mohammad Amir. He was also named part of the ‘Team of the Tournament’ at the 2017 Champions Trophy by the ICC.

On 16 December 2018 in the 2018–2019 Border Gavaskar Trophy, Kohli scored his 25th test hundred in Perth. His knock of 123 was his 6th hundred in three tours to Australia making him the only Indian to score 6 test hundreds in Australia after Sachin Tendulkar. He also became the fastest Indian and second fastest overall (125 innings) to score 25 test hundreds, second only to Donald Bradman (68 innings); which was bettered by Steven Smith during the 2019 Ashes (119 innings). Kohli’s knock was rated by several analysts and former cricketers as one of his finest against a quality Australian attack. Although he broke several records in the game his innings proved to be insufficient as India went down by 146 runs as Australia leveled the series with two tests remaining. Overall, he finished the series with 282 runs at an average of 40. By winning the test series in Australia he had become the first Indian and also the first Asian skipper to win a test series in Australia. He was again named as captain of both the World Test XI and ODI XI for 2018 by the ICC.

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2019–2020: Record-breaking captaincy and batting woes

In April 2019, he was named the captain of India’s squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup. On 16 June 2019, in India’s match against Pakistan, Kohli became the fastest batsman in terms of innings to score 11,000 runs in ODI cricket. He reached the landmark in his 222nd innings. Eleven days later in the match against the West Indies, Kohli became the fastest cricketer in terms of innings to score 20,000 runs in international cricket, doing so in his 417th innings. Kohli scored five consecutive fifty-plus scores in the tournament. Nonetheless, India lost the semi-final against New Zealand in which Kohli was out for just a run.

In November 2020, Kohli was nominated for the Sir Garfield Sobers Award for ICC Male Cricketer of the Decade as well as Test, ODI, and T20I player of the decade. He won the awards for Male cricketer of the decade and ODI cricketer of the decade.

2021–2022: Captaincy exit and resurgence

The English cricket team’s tour of India in 2020–2021 began with a long 4-match Test series. Kohli made 172 runs across 4 Test matches, at an average of 28.66 with 2 half-centuries and 2 ducks. During the second test at Chepauk, he scored 62 on a pitch which English batting great Geoffrey Boycott described as a template to bat and score runs on a turning pitch. In 2020, Kohli scored a combined (Test, ODI, and T20I) total of 842 runs from 24 innings with a highest score of 89 and an average of 36.60.

The 2021 ICC World Test Championship Final was played in June 2021, when India lost to New Zealand. This was Kohli’s third defeat as captain in a knockout game of an ICC tournament. He scored 44 and 13 in two innings before getting dismissed by Kyle Jamieson on both occasions.

Retirement from captaincy across formats

In September 2021, Kohli was named the captain of India’s squad for the 2021 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. Following this, he announced that he would step down as T20I captain after T20 World Cup. India could not authorize its position in the semi-final which was the first time in 9 years.

In December 2021, Kohli was replaced by Rohit Sharma as India’s ODI captain. BCCI President Sourav Ganguly later explained the decision to drop Kohli as ODI captain by saying that the selectors did not feel right to have two white ball captains. Later Ganguly said that BCCI had told Virat to not step down as T20I captain. Virat Kohli, during a press conference, contradicted the BCCI President and said that his decision of stepping down as captain was “received well” and termed as “progressive” by the BCCI officials. He also claimed that chief selector Chetan Sharma informed him 90 minutes before the announcement of the Test squad for India’s tour of South Africa about the removal from ODI captaincy. More than a week later during the announcement of the squad for the ODI series versus South Africa, Chetan Sharma contradicted Kohli by saying that officials had asked Virat to reconsider his decision of stepping down as T20I captain.

Return to form (Virat Kohli Biography)

Virat Kohli made his return to form in Asia Cup 2022, scoring 276 runs with an average of 92, during which he scored his maiden T20I century against Afghanistan, scoring 122* off 61 balls. He later said in the post-match presentation:

“Last two and a half years have taught me a lot. I am going to turn 34 in a month. So those angry celebrations are a thing of the past . I have had many suggestions, lot of advice has come my way; people were telling me I was doing this wrong, that wrong, I picked out all the videos from the best time I had; same initial movement, same approach towards the ball and it was just what was happening inside my head I wasn’t able to explain it to anyone ”

— Virat after scoring 71st century,

He carried his good form into the 2022 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. In the first game against Pakistan, Kohli scored 82* and won the match for his team by a close margin. He rated this as his best innings in the format due to the magnitude which the game. Kohli finished as the highest run-scorer in the tournament, with 296 runs to his name at an average of 98.66. For his performances, he was included in the Team of the tournament.

Kohli was named in India’s Test and ODI squad for India’s Tour of Bangladesh in 2022-23. In the third match, he scored his 44th ODI and overall 72nd century surpassing Ricky Ponting‘s record of the second-most centuries scored across formats in international cricket.

Virat Kohli Biography
Virat Kohli Biography

Indian Premier League (Virat Kohli Biography)

2008–2012: Early seasons

Following the Under-19 World Cup, Kohli was bought by the franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore for $30,000 on a youth contract. He was the captain of Royal challengers Bangalore for 8 seasons but was futile in winning trophies.

Representing RCB Logo(2).svg RCB
Indian Premier League
Runner-up 2009
Runner-up 2011
Runner-up 2016
Champions League
Runner-up 2011

Kohli had a poor 2008 season, with a total of 165 runs in 12 innings at an average of 15.00 and a strike rate of 105.09.

In the 2012 IPL, Virat had another average season. He scored 364 runs in the 16 matches he played and averaged 28.

2013–2021: RCB captaincy

After Vettori’s retirement, Kohli was appointed as the team’s captain for the 2013 season. During the season, Kohli averaged 45.28 while scoring 634 runs at a strike rate of over 138 including six fifties, and finished as the season’s third-highest run-scorer. In a match against Delhi Daredevils, he scored 99, missing his maiden century by a run. He fought the lone battle from his side and helped his team win the match by 4 runs.

He found success with the bat in the 2015 IPL, helping his team to qualify for the playoffs. He finished fifth on the season’s leading run-getters list with 505 runs at an average of 45.90 and a strike rate of more than 130. In the 46th match of the season, he scored 82* against Mumbai Indians, during the match he had a 215 run-partnership with AB De Villiers which was the third 200 partnership in IPL.

Record breaking year

At the 2016 IPL, the Royal Challengers finished runners-up and Kohli broke the record for most runs in an IPL season, which was previously held by Chris Gayle and Mike Hussey, they both had scored 733 runs, Kohli overtook them by scoring 973 runs in 16 matches at an average of 81.08, winning the Orange Cap as well as Most-valuable Player Award of Vivo IPL 2016. He scored four centuries in the tournament, having never scored one in the Twenty20 format before the start of the season. He also became the first player to reach the 4000-run milestone in the IPL. At the launch event of his biography, Driven: The Virat Kohli Story in New Delhi, in October 2016, Kohli announced that RCB would be the IPL franchise that he would permanently play for. His 113* against Kings XI Punjab was his best knock of the season.

On 22 April 2021, against Rajasthan Royals, Kohli became the first-ever player to reach 6000 runs in IPL. On 20 September, Royal Challengers Bangalore announced that Kohli would step down as captain following the 2021 IPL season. In this season, he scored 405 runs at an average of 28.92 in 15 games. Three fifties came out of his season, with his best being 72*.

2022–present: Post captaincy

In the 2022 season, Kohli was retained by RCB for ₹150 million (US$1.9 million). He scored 341 runs in 16 innings with an average of 21.31 and a strike rate of 115. In the match against Punjab Kings at Brabourne Stadium, he completed 6500 runs in IPL. In the last league match of the tournament against Gujarat Titans, Kohli completed 7000 runs for Royal Challengers Bangalore. However, the 2022 Season proved to be one of the worst seasons for him as he ended up having 3 ducks in a single season which included 2 consecutive golden ducks.

Player profile (Virat Kohli Biography)

Playing style

Kohli is considered an aggressive batsman with strong technical skills and a dynamic playing style. He usually bats at the number 3 position in ODI cricket, with a slightly open-chested stance and a strong bottom-hand grip. He is known for his quick footwork and wide range of shots, as well as his ability to pace innings and perform well under pressure. Kohli has stated that he is not a big hitter, and tends to play more grounded shots. He is known for his wrist-shot play and strong performance in the mid-wicket and cover region. He has said that the cover drive is his favorite shot, while also saying that the flick shot comes naturally to him. He is particularly strong on leg stump line bowling and tends to play the flick shot when the ball is delivered in this area. Kohli rarely plays the sweep shot and tends to score more between deep square leg and mid-on. His bats with a still head are versatile. He can play conventional cricket, and score between long-off and long-on with a straight blade before opening out. Kohli can be is both organized and destructive. When batting, he creates angles that defeat field placements, with a combination of bat-speed and strong, flexible wrists. In addition to his batting, Kohli is also an excellent fielder, known for his quick reflexes and safe hands.

Many pundits have suggested that Kohli may be the best limited-overs batsman in the world. In ODIs, he averages around 66 in matches batting second as opposed to around 48 batting first. 26 of his 45 ODI hundreds have come in run-chases and he holds the record for most hundreds batting second. Regarding his impressive record batting second, Kohli has said “I love the whole situation that comes with chasing. I like the challenge of testing myself, figuring out how to rotate the strike, when to hit a boundary.” His teammates have praised his confidence, commitment, focus, and work ethic.

Aggression

Kohli is known for his aggressive playing style and aggressive leadership as well. This aggression is often seen in his on-field attitude, where he is known to be fiercely competitive, and his animated and passionate reactions to situations on the field. This on-field aggression has also been reflected in his captaincy where he is known to be proactive, taking bold decisions and leading the team from the front, described in the media as “brash” and “arrogant” during his early career. He has gotten into confrontations with players and umpires on several occasions. While many former cricketers have backed his aggressive attitude, some have criticized it for crossing the line of fair play or for losing his cool. In 2012, Kohli stated that he tries to limit his aggressive behavior but “the build-up pressure or the special occasions make it tough to control the aggression.” However, Kohli himself has often stated that his aggression is a positive thing and that it helps him stay focused and motivated on the field.

READ  Approachable ‘Virat Kohli’ is making everyone smile

Comparisons to Sachin Tendulkar

Kohli is often compared to Sachin Tendulkar, due to their similar styles of batting, and is sometimes referred to as Tendulkar’s “successor”. Many former cricketers expect Kohli to break Tendulkar’s batting records. He is ranked as one of the world’s most famous athletes by ESPN. Kohli has stated that growing up his idol and role model was Tendulkar and that as a kid he “tried to copy the shots Tendulkar played and hit sixes the way he used to hit them.” Former West Indies great Vivian Richards, who is regarded as the most destructive batsman in cricket, stated that Kohli reminds him of himself. In early 2015, Richards said Kohli was “already legendary” in the ODI format, while former Australian cricketer Dean Jones called Kohli the “new king of world cricket”. Aakash Chopra, an Indian commentator, stated that “Sachin had more shots as compared to Virat”. In September 2018, West Indies legend Brian Lara, who was in New York as a part of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 Trophy Tour, picked Kohli as one of the best batsmen in the world, alongside England captain Joe Root.

In popular culture

Kohli was signed up by sports agent Bunty Sajdeh of Cornerstone Sport and Entertainment after the 2008 Under-19 World Cup. Sajdeh recalls, “I didn’t go after them after they became stars. In fact, I watched Virat at the 2008 ICC Under-19 World Cup in Kuala Lumpur. I was mighty impressed with his attitude and the way he was marshaling his team. He had that spark. And I told Yuvi to set up the meeting.” Sajdeh manages Kohli’s endorsement deals, along with those of other Indian cricketers Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, and Murali Vijay. It was reported in 2013 that Kohli’s brand endorsements were worth over ₹1 billion (US$13 million). His bat deal with MRF is said to be the costliest deal in Indian cricket history.

In 2018, A documentary featuring him was released on National Geographic, It was about Kohli’s achievements in cricket. On the 11th anniversary of their international debut, Kohli was honored with a stand on his name at Feroz Shah Kotla stadium in Delhi; became the youngest cricketer to have a stand on his name. In November 2019, on the occasion of his thirty-first birthday, Super V an Indian animated superhero television series was released; portrays a fictionalized version of Kohli’s teen years where he discovers hidden superpowers.

Outside cricket (Virat Kohli Biography)

Personal life

Kohli started dating Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma in 2013; the couple soon earned the portmanteau “Virushka”. Their relationship attracted substantial media attention, with persistent rumors and speculations in the media, as neither of the two publicly talked about it. The couple married on 11 December 2017 in a private ceremony in Florence, Italy. On 11 January 2021, their first child, a girl, was born.

In 2018, Kohli revealed that he completely stopped consuming meat to cut down his uric acid levels which caused him a cervical spine issue and started affecting his finger and, in turn, his batting. In 2021, he clarified that he is a vegetarian and not a vegan.

Kohli has admitted that he is superstitious. He used to wear black wristbands as a cricket superstition; earlier, he used to wear the same pair of gloves with which he had “been scoring”. Apart from a religious black thread, he has also been wearing a kara on his right arm since 2012.

Kohli has a lot of tattoos on his body, he has tattoos of the God Shiva in dhyan mudra on Kailash parvat because he worships Lord ShivaOm, his parent’s names (Prem and Saroj), an Aadivasi sign, a monastery, Samurai warrior, the word ‘Scorpion’, and his ODI and Test cap numbers on his body.

Virat Kohli with his Family
Virat Kohli with his Family

Commercial investments (Virat Kohli Biography)

In 2014, Kohli became a co-owner of the Indian Super League club FC Goa. He stated that he invested in the club because he “wanted football to grow in India”. He added, “It’s a business venture for me for the future. Cricket’s not going to last forever and I’m keeping all my options open after retirement.”

In 2022, Kohli along with his wife invested ₹2.5 crores (US$310,000) in an insurance-based startup named ‘Digit’. He also invested in Blue Tribe, a startup in plant-based meat products; that aims to manufacture and distribute delicacies like frozen minced chicken and more. Kohli himself claims to follow a plant-based diet and now wishes to tell people how they can be more conscious and leave less impact on the planet.

Philanthropy (Virat Kohli Biography)

He started a charitable foundation called “Virat Kohli Foundation” in 2013. The organization aims at helping underprivileged kids and conducts events to raise funds for charity. According to Kohli, the foundation works with select NGOs to “create awareness, seek support and raise funds for the various causes they endorse and the philanthropic work they engage in.” In May 2014, eBay and Save the Children India conducted a charity auction with VKF, with its proceeds benefiting the education and healthcare of underprivileged children. Kohli also envisions creating a better sports-facilitated future for children. He is committed to building youth-focused programs for children and providing them with resources, using his partnerships to support the exposed section of our society.

In the wake of the coronavirus in 2020, Kohli along with his wife Anushka pledged to donate to PM Relief fun and Maharashtra CM Relief. He along with his wife Anushka Sharma is passionate about animals and they have made their own personal contributions to wildlife relief efforts. With his support to Awaaz, he wishes to have well-planned medical services, shelter, and food for the strays.

Career summary (Virat Kohli Biography)

As of January 2023, Kohli has made 74 centuries and 7 double centuries in international cricket—27 centuries, 7 double centuries in Test cricket, 46 centuries in One Day Internationals (ODIs), and 1 century in T20I.

Test match performance

An innings-by-innings breakdown of Kohli’s Test batting career, showing runs scored (blue and red (not out) bars) and the black line is his career batting average.

ODI match performance (Virat Kohli Biography)

An innings-by-innings breakdown of Kohli’s ODI batting career, showing runs scored (blue and red (not out) bars) and the black line is his career batting average.

T20I match performance (Virat Kohli Biography)

An innings-by-innings breakdown of Kohli’s T20I batting career, showing runs scored (blue and red (not out) bars) and the black line is his career batting average.

Kohli is the only player to have been awarded Player of the Tournament of T20 World Cup twice (in 2014 and 2016). He has 2nd most centuries in ODI (45) and is only behind Sachin Tendulkar who has 49 centuries. Furthermore, he has 2nd most centuries(73) in international cricket and is only behind Sachin Tendulkar(100) In 2018, he scored 1000 ODI runs in 11 innings which is the least number of innings taken to score 1000 runs in a calendar year. In 2022, he completed 1000 runs in ICC Men’s T20 World Cup and became just the second player to achieve this milestone after Mahela Jayawardene.

Test records (Virat Kohli Biography)

  • Most Wins as captain of India, with 40 wins out of 68 matches.
  • Four Test double-hundreds in four consecutive series.

ODI records

  • Most ODI centuries while chasing (26).
  • Most ODI centuries at home (21).
  • Fastest to – 8,000 runs(175 innings) 9,000 runs(194 innings) 10,000 runs(205 innings) 11,000 runs(222 innings) 12,000 runs(242 innings).

T20I records (Virat Kohli Biography)

  • Most runs in T20 internationals – 4,008 runs.
  • Most Fifty plus scores in the career – 38 (including 37 fifties and 1 century).
  • Highest career batting average in T20I – 52.73.
  • Fastest to – 3,000 runs(81 innings) 3,500 runs(96 innings).
  • Most players of the match(15 times) and player of the series awards(7 times).

IPL records

  • Most runs in Indian Premiere League – 6,624 runs.
  • Most runs in a single edition of IPL – 973 runs (2016).
  • The only player to be involved in three double-century-plus stands, two times with AB de Villiers and once with Chris Gayle.
  • Fastest to – 5,000 runs(165 innings) 6,000 runs (188 innings)
  • Most runs against Delhi Capitals(925).
  • Most hundreds in a season (4).

Honors (Virat Kohli Biography)

National honors

  • 2013 – Arjuna Award
  • 2017 – IND Padma Shri BAR.png Padma Shri, India’s fourth highest civilian award.
  • 2018 – Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, India’s highest sporting honor.

Sporting honors

  • Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy (ICC Men’s Cricketer of the Decade): 2011–2020
  • Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy (ICC Cricketer of the Year): 2017, 2018
  • ICC ODI Player of the Year: 2012, 2017, 2018
  • ICC Test Player of the Year: 2018
  • ICC ODI Team of the Year: 2012, 2014, 2016 (captain), 2017 (captain), 2018 (captain), 2019 (Captain)
  • ICC Test Team of the Year: 2017 (captain), 2018 (captain), 2019 (Captain)
  • ICC Spirit of Cricket: 2019
  • ICC Men’s ODI Cricketer of the Decade: 2011–2020
  • ICC Men’s Test Team of the Decade: 2011–2020 (Captain)
  • ICC Men’s ODI Team of the Decade: 2011–2020
  • ICC Men’s T20I Team of the Decade: 2011–2020
  • Polly Umrigar Award for International Cricketer of the Year: 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18
  • Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World: 2016, 2017, 2018
  • ICC Men’s Player of the Month: October 2022
  • CEAT International Cricketer of the Year: 2011–12, 2013–14, 2018–19
  • Indian Premier League Orange Cap for most runs: 2016
  • Barmy Army – International Player of the Year: 2017, 2018
  • ESPNcricinfo – ODI Batting Performance of the Year: 2012

Other honors and awards (Virat Kohli Biography)

  • People’s Choice Awards India For Favourite Sportsperson: 2012
  • CNN-News18 Indian of the Year: 2017
  • Delhi & District Cricket Association (DDCA) renamed a stand after Kohli at Arun Jaitley stadium, Delhi.

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