Virat Kohli said there is no bigger challenge than a World Cup for a cricketer as he gears up to lead India in the mega event starting England in a few weeks. Kohli was part of India’s World Cup-winning side in 2011 and was a key member of the 2015 team which reached the World Cup semifinals Down Under.
Virat Kohli has been in exceptional form with the bat over the last 3 years. In 2018, Kohli shattered several records in South Africa and led India to a historic ODI series win. Earlier this year, Virat Kohli led India to ODI series wins in Australia and New Zealand.
Virat Kohli recently became the first cricketer to be awarded the top three ICC awards (Cricketer of the year, Test cricketer of the year and ODI cricketer of the year) in a single year.
India have achieved a lot in ODIs over the last 1 year, especially away from home. But like every other cricketer, Virat Kohli is aware of the importance of the World Cup. He said this would be a very different World Cup for him. In 2011, he was one of the youngest members of the team while in 2015, a lot more was expected.
‘In 2011, I wasn’t involved in a lot of things’
8 years after India lifted the World Cup in Mumbai, Virat Kohli will have his hands full as the side’s best batsman and captain.
“This is going to be the tournament in which I will be involved in a lot of things. In 2011, I was not involved in a lot of things, was not involved in a lot of meetings, the pressures that come along. At this point in time it’s going to be different,” Virat Kohli told India Today in an exclusive interview.
“Even in 2015, I wasn’t involved to an extent where I had to be part of everything that is going on. To understand the magnitude of a tournament like this from a captain’s point of view is a different ball game. When you play so much international cricket, after a while you need a bigger challenge and there’s nothing bigger than the World Cup,” he added.
So far in an illustrious career, Virat Kohli has scored 10843 runs including 41 hundreds and 49 fifties in 227 ODIs. He will be key for India and he said will look to do as much as he can in the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
“I will look to contribute as much as I can. Won’t say that I will look to do something different just because it’s a World Cup. Fortunately, I am in the mindset, I don’t have to pick myself up for a series, because I always have the same intensity and drive to take the team over the line,” Virat Kohli told India Today.
“To make the team win, to contribute to the team’s cause are the pressure I enjoy. I don’t necessarily focus on things that are expected of me, because there are a lot of things that are controllable. Expectations are absolutely fine because people want me to do well. The main focus is to stay in the mindset how the team is playing and whether it is doing well or not,” Kohli said.