India vs Australia 2017: I don't play for the three-figure mark, says Virat Kohli
What's the story?
Ahead of the first ODI between India and Australia, Indian skipper Virat Kohli faced the media and spoke about various things including the team combination, his fondness for the Kids, importance of wrist spinners in the format etc.
When asked about his appetite for scoring centuries, Kohli said he never thinks about individual milestones and his main aim is to win the match for his team.
He said, "I don't play for the three-figure mark. Maybe that's why I end up crossing it more times because I am not thinking about it. I don't put myself under a lot of pressure in terms of achieving the landmarks. For me, what's more important is to win the games for my team. As I said before, even if I am 98 not out, I don't mind, if I am 99 not out, I don't mind as long as we win the game. In that process, things happen because you want to stay till the end and if there are enough runs on the board, you will end up achieving those landmarks because you are thinking about the end result and not about you reaching the landmark."
"My motivation has never been that, will never be that. Whatever time I play, 8 years or 10 years or 12 years, I will never think of that because it doesn't come to me naturally. For me, what's more important is how to make the team win, with the bat, in the field, giving my 120% whenever I step on the field. It feels good afterward because you made the team win but you can't start off thinking about those things because you will end up losing the ultimate goal, which is winning the game for the team," he added.
In case you didn't know...
Kohli has already scored 8587 runs in 186 innings at an outstanding average of 56 with the help of 44 fifties and 30 centuries, joint second highest with former Aussie batsman Ricky Ponting for the most ODI 100s in a career. In spite of playing just 10 years, he is on his way to becoming the greatest ODI player of all-time.
Kohli also said that the team will back Ajinkya Rahane at the top of the order in the absence of Shikhar Dhawan, who was released from the Indian squad to be with his ailing wife.
He also added that KL Rahul is an outstanding talent who has proved himself in the past and will be backed by the team because once he gets his role, he will start winning games for the team on his own.
India take on Australia in a five-match ODI and a three-match T20I series starting on September 17 at the MA Chidambaram stadium in Chennai. India-Australia series have always been blockbusters in the past and the case is no different with the upcoming series as this already promises to be one.
The way Kohli approaches the game is the main reason why he is the best going around. His hunger for winning matches for his country will help him break more records with the bat, especially if he plays for eight more years.