2011 will be remembered as one of the most eventful years in the history of Indian Cricket. Team saw the highs and lows of equal proportion. Number one rankings in test Cricket and the triumph in the 50 overs World Cup brought them the comparisons from the best world had seen. Winning a World Cup and being Number One in Test Cricket at the same time is no mean achievement.
However, India’s tour to England painted a grim picture of what was lying ahead. Team was thrashed in every match they played on the tour.
When the team travelled to Australia at the end of the year it was anticipated as the one that will turn the tables for them. Yet again the team was slaughtered this time by the might of Aussies.
The only positive team gained was the emergence of Virat Kohli, the perennial controversy child of Indian Cricket. He is typical modern day Cricketer. Stylishly done hair, flaunting tattoos and the perfect dressing sense makes him a style icon but when on Cricket field he play his game passionately and is not afraid of being over the top with his celebrations.
Before the tour started Kohli was still finding the ways to replicate his limited overs success in the longer format.
As the series progressed India’s struggle augmented. Kohli too failed to make a score of any significance. Towards the end of second day of second test at SCG, Australia was totally in control. India, already low on confidence were further demoralized by brilliant centuries from Clarke and Ponting. Australian crowd known for eccentric behavior were totally behind their team. It was at that time when Kohli guarding the boundary was seen gesturing the crowd with his middle finger.
The incident was reported as major story in all the national dailies next morning. Former players criticized Kohli and his behavior was termed as Disgraceful. He was fined with 50 % of his match fees.
It was not the first time when he found himself in the middle of something outrageous. He has been often leveled as temperamental. His over the top celebration after winning the Under-19 World Cup was well documented. Constant use of swear words and wild celebrations on Cricket field earned him a reputation of bad boy of Indian Cricket.
And again, later in the same series he had an on field altercation with number of Australian players that did nothing but enhanced his bad boy image. However, as the series the approached its finale Kohli started to find his mojo. After top scoring in both the innings at Perth, he hit his first test century at Adelaide Oval in the last test.
It was truly a coming of age of Virat Kohli- The Batsman! It came at a time when all the stalwarts in team fell apart. He was the only Indian to score a century in the series. It definitely helped him gain few admirers. Later in the one day series he went on to play one of the most astonishing innings of all time when he smacked Sri Lanka bowlers to all part of ground in 86 balls-131 runs innings.