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IND v AUS 2020: 'I think Virat Kohli will go on as long as he is sucking air into his lungs' - Matthew Hayden

Virat Kohli is the fastest to the 12000-run mark in ODI cricket
Virat Kohli is the fastest to the 12000-run mark in ODI cricket
Kartik Iyer
ANALYST
Modified 11 Dec 2020
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Former Australian opener Matthew Hayden has opined that Virat Kohli will continue to play with the same intensity until the time his body allows him to do so.

In a recent episode of the Star Sports show Cricket Connected, former cricketing greats Hayden, Sunil Gavaskar and VVS Laxman shared their thoughts about Virat Kohli's accomplishment of reaching the 12000-run mark in ODI cricket.

Sunil Gavaskar was asked about the enormity of Virat Kohli accomplishing 12000 runs in just 242 innings, with even the great Sachin Tendulkar taking 300 knocks to do so.

He responded that it is a massive achievement considering the difference in number of innings the two Indian batting greats took to reach the milestone.

"This is huge, this is absolutely huge. As you just said, the gap was 58 innings. It just tells you the consistency of Virat Kohli."

The former Indian captain highlighted that the significant point is that Virat Kohli has managed to cross the fifty-run mark in more than forty percent of his innings.

"And when you have a look at the record, he has played 251 matches, in which he has got 60 half-centuries and 43 hundreds. That means a 103 times in his 251 matches for India, he has gone past the fifty mark."

Gavaskar pointed out that Virat Kohli's ability to convert half-centuries to three figures sets him apart from the other batsmen.

"That is the reason he has been able to get to this figure quicker than anybody else because he has got this fabulous conversion rate where once he gets to a fifty, he gets to a hundred."

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Matthew Hayden and VVS Laxman on Virat Kohli's fitness and his future goal

Virat Kohli has attributed his consistency to his enhanced fitness levels
Virat Kohli has attributed his consistency to his enhanced fitness levels

Matthew Hayden was asked how long he sees Virat Kohli playing with the current intensity. He replied that the chase-master is likely to continue as long as he can, singling out the latter's fitness levels as the key reason for his success.

"I think he will go on as long as he is sucking air into his lungs and has a heartbeat. One of the features I think of Virat has been his remarkable fitness levels. So for me, I think that is a really key element."

VVS Laxman observed that Virat Kohli's primary goal in ODI cricket would be to help India win the 2023 World Cup under his leadership. He termed winning the tournament as the biggest accomplishment a cricketer could achieve.

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"I feel his first aim will be the 2023 World Cup because he has the chance to win that as a captain. When we talk about Sachin Tendulkar, we talk about the 100 centuries but if you ask Sachin what has been the memorable moment in his career, he will say the 2011 World Cup that he won at Wankhede."

Virat Kohli reached the 12000-run mark in the final ODI against Australia. Due to the consistency he has displayed over the last few years, he is expected to break Sachin Tendulkar's twin records of most runs and most centuries in the 50-over format of the game.


Published 11 Dec 2020, 09:34 IST
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