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Virat Kohli: Sachin Tendulkar's records and legacy should be respected

Virat Kohli maintains his stance that he cannot be compared to Sachin Tendulkar and that the latter's legacy should be respected.

Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli
Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli: Master and protégé

Virat Kohli is gearing up for his 4th series as captain of the Indian Test team as India are scheduled to look horns with the West Indies for four Tests starting on the 21st of July at the Sir Vivian Richards stadium, Antigua. Kohli will lead a full strength India squad that boasts of players such as Ajinkya Rahane, Murali Vijay and Ravichandran Ashwin against a relatively inexperienced West Indies squad, captained by Jason Holder. 

Kohli failed to sparkle in the first warm-up against the Board President’s XI but will be thrilled by form shown by Murali Vijay, KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma, all of whom recorded half-centuries. He will look to have a better outing in the second match starting on the 14th

Read: Can Virat Kohli be India’s #3 batsman in Tests?

Virat Kohli has had an exceptional 2016, carrying the hopes of his team on his shoulders single-handedly quite often. His thrilling knocks against Pakistan and Australia in the World T20 led to inevitable comparsions with Sachin Tendulkar, his icon growing up. The reasons for such comparisions are valid, as Kohli’s numbers at this stage suggest he could go on to reach the level of his hero. Kohli has however, quite often, rebuffed these comparisions. Sachin Tendulkar has maintained that Virat Kohli is a special talent. 

Comparisons should start from players under him

Kohli recently spoke at large as to why he shouldn’t be compared to Sachin. "I don't see why people compare me with him because the way he played his cricket and the way he inspired people, I don't think anyone else has been able to inspire people like that. Where he is, I think all the comparison should start leaving him aside. Even if people want to compare, he should be left apart, it should start from under him” he said recently in an interview with the ICC. 

24 years and 100 centuries, respect his legacy 

"I don't intend to match up to the numbers that he has produced for India because it is humanly impossible to that you will be able to play that long period because he started at 16 firstly and then to be so consistent, you cannot guarantee that. That's a once in a lifetime kind of legacy in cricket. We should appreciate that, respect that and not get carried away with comparisons. He has left a legacy which will be hard to recreate.  To play for 24 years and score 100 centuries is not an easy thing. 

Sachin motivated all of us to play cricket’ 

"He will probably be the one and only man in Indian cricket to have that sort of an impact. I will be happy with what I have achieved at the end of my career because I give my 120 percent," he added.

Kohli has earned a lot of admirers in recent times, not only with his performances with the bat, but also the maturity he shown in growing from a brash young punk to handling the responsibility of being India’s Test captain. Knowing Kohli, he will want to carve his own legacy, and not only try to reach a level set by someone else. 

 
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