Former Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan has opined Virat Kohli is a better captain in Test cricket than in the white-ball formats of the game. He made this observation in a recent edition of the Star Sports show Cricket Connected.
Irfan Pathan replied in the affirmative when asked if he considers Virat Kohli's captaincy in Test matches to be better than that in limited-overs cricket. He reasoned the 32-year old's extreme fitness levels allow him to be at the top of his game for the entire duration of a Test match.
"Absolutely, I believe that. And there is a reason for that. Because when you have to perform better in Test cricket, you need to have amazing fitness and the consistency of that fitness along with that."
The left-arm pacer added there is no drop in Virat Kohli's intensity either as a batsman or as a skipper over the five days of the match.
"Aggression is his strength but to continuously have that aggression for five days is not possible for everyone. And Virat Kohli does that continuously and that is why with that aggression, with that fitness, his batsmanship and his captaincy work together and there is no fall in either of them."
Pathan highlighted this continuous aggressive streak in Virat Kohli's nature has helped him get positive results in the longest format of the game.
"That is why I feel that what is most required in Test cricket, Virat Kohli uses that very well and that is aggression and he maintains that as well. That is why you see the results again and again."
Irfan Pathan lauds Virat Kohli for the Indian team's success in the 2018-19 tour of Australia
Irfan Pathan signed off by pointing out that India winning the 2018-19 Test series in Australia under Virat Kohli's leadership was a huge achievement. The Baroda pacer added that he has first-hand experience of the amount of hard work required just to win a Test match in Australia.
"India became the first Asian team to win a series in Australia. I have been a part of multiple Australian tours. You have to put in a lot of effort just to win a single match and here we are talking that India won the series in Virat Kohli's captaincy, which is praiseworthy."
Virat Kohli took over the Indian Test captaincy from MS Dhoni during the 2014-15 tour to Australia. He garnered a lot of praise from all quarters for showing the positive intent while chasing a 364-run target in the fourth innings of the Adelaide Test in his first match as captain, although the Indian team fell short by 48 runs.
Virat Kohli has an exceptional record both as a batsman and skipper since taking over the Indian Test captaincy. He has amassed 5142 runs at an average of 61.21 in the 55 Test matches he has led the country, with India having finished on the winning side in 33 of those encounters.
Published 16 Dec 2020, 19:10 IST