New Delhi, March 29 (IANS) Praising Virat Kohli for his superb performance during the ongoing World Twenty20, former batting legend Sunil Gavaskar said that the Indian star is currently the best limited-overs batsman in the world.
“At the moment he is got to be the best limited-overs batsman in the world. There is no question about it. There is not the slightest doubt about it because he is beyond phenomenal. He is something else,” Gavaskar told NDTV.
“Whatever little hair that I have, my hair was standing at attention watching the young genius. It was just mindblowing stuff,” he added.
Kohli has played a starring role for India at the World Twenty20, scoring 184 runs in four matches. The 27-year-old right-hander anchored the Indian chase with 82 runs off 51 deliveries in the final group match against Australia to carry the hosts into the semi-finals.
Talking about Kohli’s performance against Australia, Gavaskar said that the Delhi lad has shown that batsmen can be successful in in the T20 format without resorting to rash strokeplay.
“He played cricketing shots and there was no wild slogging. The drives were absolutely breathtaking. Everything was so right about those shots. Also he has got the priceless gift of power and timing. And he plays correct cricket. He showed that you don’t have to play slam bang cricket in T20. You don’t have to look to hit the sixes. Four boundaries in an over he hit and then run brilliantly between the wickets and you got your 20 runs in an over,” the former India captain said.
“Just another terrific win for India, in a pressure game too. He’s been on a roll and he’s been in it for a while. He ‘s made 535 runs this year. Some people talk about being in the moment and he’s been in the moment all year. There’s not enough adjectives to the way he’s played. He just knows what shots to play at what time and he’s got the confidence to do it,” he added.
Gavaskar also lauded Kohli for maintaining a calm composure in difficult situations and performing consistently under pressure. The Delhi lad is known for being aggressive and getting into confrontations with opposition players, but Gavaskar feels that Kohli maintains his cool in tense situations.
“Look at his record when India needs runs or chasing runs. He wins the match for them every single time and it’s a combination of power and timing. It’s a combination of two hands, very few batsmen have this ability to play with both the top and the bottom hand. When he was driving off the top hand, it was phenomenal. Look at the selflessness of the man. He was quite happy to allow the strike to his skipper because he knew that the skipper would also make a statement,” Gavaskar said.
“Lot of times when you play such big innings, you want to hit the winning runs. But there he is, a complete, total team man. Thank god, he is playing for India,” he added.
“When you see him during fielding, look how animated he is. But with the bat, he is a completely different personality. He is very composed, doesn’t let any emotions come in the way.”