3 reasons why Virat Kohli is the most aggressive Indian captain ever

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli
Uday Joshi

"Sport has nothing to do with fair play. In other words, it is war minus the shooting." - George Orwell

When George Orwell says something you just accept it as gospel. But I think we know someone who plays the game of cricket in that way, don't we?

On 5th November 1988, a superstar was born in Delhi. Yes, we are talking about Virat Kohli, the man who wears his heart on his sleeve, the man who plays every game as the last game of his life.

Kohli never ceases to amaze us whether it's with his masterful batting or with his awe-inspiring fielding. But how about his leadership?

Many commentators and experts have claimed that Kohli is more Aussie than Indian, and rightly so. The Indian skipper has maintained the Aussie kind of intensity and aggression in every bit of the game; he celebrates every wicket like it's the last he's going to witness on the field, and that tells the story of his 24*7 animated face.

Like many legends who have been criticized for their nature of play, Kohli too has faced his fair share whenever his emotional outbursts have lead to some banter on the field. But Captain Ferocious has only gone on to do better with his leadership.

There are many attributes to his captaincy, and the primary one is his own nature.

From the likes of MAK Pataudi, Ajit Wadekar to Kapil Dev and Mohd. Azharuddin, there had been a strong in-built system of accepting challenges but also accepting defeats, in a very gentle way. That changed when 'Dada' arrived.

Sourav Ganguly led a team which had a wonderful mixture of young talent and experience and he pushed them to a level that no other Indian skipper had even thought of, especially overseas. The hostile leadership was exceptional even in its existence.

On the other hand, the team under MS Dhoni achieved everything there is to achieve on a cricket field but failed to do win much overseas.

In the bastion of legendary Indian captains, Kohli stands out - not in terms of success or win percentage but in terms of his ability to lead a team with insurmountable self-belief and vigor till the last ball of the game is bowled. His infectious energy and his ability in leading scathing attacks on the opposition have truly made him one of a kind.

Among many, these 3 reasons are the ones that make him the most aggressive Indian captain ever:

1. He fights fire with fire

"As the king, so the people."

Let's be honest, India has never had a captain who slayed the opposition with his words. Not that that's the best way to win or that it would have helped others improve their success rate, but being so outspoken gives a young team an unparalleled confidence to believe in themselves, and to play bold when they know their skipper is backing them at every step of the game.

Kohli has certainly been the most self-confident batsman of his team. But when it comes to his captaincy, the confidence and the energy on the field just skyrocket, and his infectious aggression has affects others in the process.

He is always the one who starts the proceedings when it comes to taking on the opposition, and sometimes he gives it in advance too. There have innumerable instances of him dishing it back to the opposition, whether ordering Steve Smith to "stay within his limits" during the Adelaide Test in 2014 or telling James Faulkner "I have hit you enough in my life, just go and bowl."

During the 3rd Test in England this year, Stuart Broad was made to taste his own medicine by Kohli. The Indian skipper reminded Broad of what you receive for treating a youngster in the manner which he did by giving a fiery send-off to debutant Rishabh Pant. Needless to say, India has never had such a captain before.

2) He is a hard nut to crack

Considering the fact that it was a series which had his whole Test career on the line, the way he gave it back to the Aussies during the all-important 2014 tour - where he ended up with a monumental 692 runs - was something hitherto unseen in Indian cricket.

Those images of him massacring Mitchell Johnson have been etched in the memories of every Indian fan. The series showed his ability to take the attack to the opposition and come out with flying colors; it eventually made a great test batsman out of him and a fearless leader too.

Being a captain of the Indian cricket team is not everyone's cup of tea, and especially not while being the best batsman in the side.

The England tour of 2014 had been a disaster for Kohli, as he scored just 134 runs at an average just above 13 in 10 innings. Four years down the line, he was up against those same bowlers in those same conditions and on those same grounds too, but the man had evolved.

Kohli showed us why he is the most astute cricketer today, amassing 544 runs, and with his patience and grit only added more flame to the fire. He buried his woes with his biggest weapon - his ability to learn from his mistakes.

Kohli never allowed anyone to get the better of him in the entire series, and especially not James Anderson, his nemesis during the 2014 tour. In a way, he individually made England play according to his terms.

The level at which Kohli plays sometimes seems unimaginable. His gung-ho zeal really has lit a fire among the other players. We had never before seen an Indian captain produce a run feast in overseas conditions, and yet Kohli did that with a nonchalance that bordered on the arrogant.

There is no doubt Kohli is going to be hailed as the best batting captain India has ever produced.

3) He never minces his words

Have you ever seen Kohli being afraid to speak up? No! The man is literally as transparent a human as can be. He never hides emotions whether it's on or off the field. His anger, happiness or sadness on the field only reflect his passion for the game.

After the India vs Australia 2017 Test series ended, Kohli came out all guns blazing when he said, "The Aussies are no longer my friends". This came after an exhilarating series full of 'brain fade' moments and mental disintegration.

We had never before seen an Indian captain speaking about the use of a specific cricket ball, had we? But Kohli spoke about the decline in the quality of SG balls and why it is necessary in Test cricket to use the Dukes ball in every country. He is a man at the top of his form speaking out for the betterment of the game. His aim is to make Test cricket popular once again.

Kohli's press conferences look like aggressive talk shows. He never cares what others think of him or his team, and that's the hallmark of a great leader. He never ducks a controversial question and doesn't hold back when irrelevant charges are made against any of his team members.

I think Kohli's approach is the right way forward. The way this generation is adapting to the game, it's befitting that India have a captain like Kohli, a role model for youngsters and for his teammates.

Edited by Musab Abid
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