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IPL 2017: Virat Kohli has grown as a leader, says AB de Villiers

The South African ODI skipper also labelled Kohli as the best batsman in the world.

News 07 Apr 2017, 16:27 IST
AB de Villiers Virat Kohli
AB has praised Virat Kohli

What’s the story?

AB de Villiers is one of the most respected voices in International cricket and after having played with Virat Kohli for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, the South African ODI captain has expressed his delight over the growth of Kohli as a leader. He also went ahead and said that the Indian captain is the best player in world cricket at the moment. 

At the start when people mentioned that he has leadership qualities and might become a captain one day I doubted it. I thought he was emotional with his reactions. I think he has found a way to deal with it. He is still an emotional character, he loves winning and is very passionate but he has found a way to manage and control that. I know he is a great asset for Indian cricket, he leads exceptionally well,” De Villiers said during a media interaction. 

AB also spoke about his injury and said that he will not take the field unless he is 100% sure of his fitness. 

“Even though I'm keen to get on the field, I'll make sure that I'm 100% fit because if you go on the park and you're 90%, you might be out for longer anyway. I'll hit a couple of balls, see what it feels like and then take a call,” he added.

The Details

AB who has played under Kohli for 3 seasons also believes that the once flashy and very temperamental Kohli has matured and grown into a very fine and astute leader and in the process has proved all his detractors wrong. 

The man who is also known as a 360-degree batsman showered praises on Kohli for his leadership credentials which shone out during the recently concluded Border-Gavaskar trophy. He said that although he struggled to get going with the bat, he never allowed the low scores to get in the way when he took the field as the skipper of the side.

Also, De Villiers added that Kohli’s journey as a captain has just begun and that it will be very exciting to see his progress over the next 5 years.

In case you didn’t know...

The Royal Challengers Bangalore side is grappling with a host of injuries to its star players which includes both Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers and both these superstars will take time to recover and take the field. 

While Kohli injured his shoulder during the 3rd Test match against Ranchi, AB injured his back before the final of regional One Day final back in South Africa. 

What's next? 

RCB had to end up on the losing side in their opening fixture against the defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad and the team will next face off against Delhi Daredevils at their fortress in Bangalore. 

It would be interesting to see whether AB de Villiers passes the fitness test as his presence would be a huge boost to the home team on Saturday. 

Author's Take

Ever since the Australia series, there have been a lot of statements passed on the captaincy of Virat Kohli and this positive statement by AB de Villiers is sure to egg on the Indian captain to greater things in the future. 

Also, this shows the respect and camaraderies the players have for each other and perhaps this is one of the biggest contributions of the IPL

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