Kohli displays free-kick skills, coach not surprised

Virat Kohli, whose football skills are no secret, displayed his ability to hit perfect free-kicks on social media in an accidental crossbar challenge. The India skipper, struck a pile-driver from outside the box and struck crossbar as the goalkeeper stretched to stop it.

The 32-year-old covered his face in his palms in disbelief soon after.

Kohli wrote on his Instagram account, “Accidental crossbar challenge [emoticon: smiling face].”

Raj Kumar Sharma, who groomed Kohli in his junior days, told IANS on Wednesday, “He was always a good and competitive football player. I remember when we used to warm up ahead of practice at our academy, Kohli would prefer football over running around the field. Even though it used to be warm-up, Kohli would be extremely competitive and try and win.”

Kohli, who is among the best batsmen in the world and is just six centuries short of Sachin Tendulkar’s record 49 ODI tons, seems to be an icon for even some of Indian football players due to his supreme fitness.

“Post 2015-16, I took it (fitness) extremely seriously — that’s when the realisation crept in. I read about how Virat Kohli approaches his fitness, his training regime, diet, and how he never ever goes against the roadmap laid down by his personal trainer,” said India football team defender Pritam Kotal on Tuesday.