'Virat Kohli is like Roger Federer, Steve Smith is similar to Rafael Nadal,' says AB de Villiers

  • AB de Villiers picked Virat Kohli as the better natural ball striker over Australian star, Steve Smith.
  • AB de Villiers also claimed that he feels Virat Kohli is a better run-chaser than Sachin Tendulkar.
Modified 11 May 2020, 14:42 IST

Virat Kohli is one of the IPL
Virat Kohli is one of the IPL's greatest players

South African star cricketer AB de Villiers on Monday picked Virat Kohli as the better ball striker over Australia's Steve Smith.

The former South Africa captain, during a conversation with commentator Pommie Mbangwa on an Instagram Live session, drew parallels to the playing styles of Virat Kohli and Smith to the technique of tennis legends, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

"Virat is more of a natural ball striker. If you look at natural ball strikers, Virat is like Federer. Smith is more like Nadal, he's mentally very strong. He's figured out a way to score runs, he doesn't look too natural but he manages to break records. Virat though has scored runs all over the world and he's my pick," said de Villiers.

AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli have enjoyed a great friendship on and off the field, having enjoyed multiple partnerships together for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League.

The South African superstar joined RCB in 2011 and since then, he has formed an imperative part of RCB's batting order. Notably, de Villiers and Virat Kohli recently even put some memorabilia from their record 229-run partnership against the Gujarat Lions in IPL 2016 up for auction to raise funds for coronavirus relief efforts.

"Virat Kohli is the best run-chaser I've seen in my life"

During the conversation, Mbangwa also read out a fan question, which was for de Villiers to pick his favourite cricketer between Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli.

Having played alongside Virat Kohli for about eight years now, de Villiers spoke about how Tendulkar has been a role model for both him and Virat Kohli, but the RCB captain stands out in certain situations.

"Sachin has been a role model for both of us, the way he stood out in his era and the things he achieved with grace is a great example. Virat will also say that he's (Tendulkar) the main guy and he set the standards. When it comes to me personally, Virat is the best (in run-chases) I've seen in my life. Sachin was amazing in all situations, but in terms of chasing under pressure, Virat tops him," De Villiers said.

Published 11 May 2020, 14:42 IST
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