Virat Kohli will turn 35 next month. And while it’s a hard pill to swallow, even the strongest Indian cricketer feels the effects of father time. The sight of Kohli gasping for breath after a double against South Africa in last year’s T20 World Cup is still fresh in many people’s minds, and just last month Kohli admitted he was “tired” after India played three days in a row in ODI cricket in the rain-plagued Asia Cup. However, considering the fitness standards he has set for himself and the world, as well as the recovery time required, Kohli continues to improve his performances, the most recent of which came during India’s World Cup opening match against Australia in Chennai. , where going 0-1, Kohli scored 85 points and thanks to his winning partnership with KL Rahul, India crossed the goal line.
But the conditions were not at all easy to overcome. He took the field early after spending 50 overs in the energy-sapping heat in Chennai and by the time he came out to attack, although the sun had already set, muggy and humid weather coupled with the two-faced nature of the wicket saw Kohli in one of the harshest Tests of his career. It took him a few overs, a few wild hops on the wing and some respite from a dropped catch, but once Kohli had his eye on it, the Indian run-champion went about his business.
After India completed an impressive six-wicket win with 56 balls to spare, the two architects of the victory, Kohli and Rahul, met for a candid chat where they discussed various phases of the game. Kohli talked about how difficult it was for him to play Chepauk on an intense evening and admitted that fatigue eventually caught up with him.
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“The one thing that was most important to me about our partnership was – obviously because of the low point total – but how happy we were with turning the ball over. Not necessarily looking at the number of balls we bowled and the runs we made. I’m just struggling with the physical challenges of what we had to experience this afternoon and evening. The pressure, of course, makes you feel more tense and you start to be more tired than you actually are. I just hit the ball and then move a total of 10-15 rounds at a time. I felt it was something that really helped us build this great partnership,” Kohli told Rahul in a video uploaded by BCCI.
KL Rahul’s body was ‘tired’
Kohli and Rahul’s 165-partnership was a second-century event that both of them engaged in within a month. During the Asia Cup Super Fours clash against Pakistan at Pallekele, Kohli and Rahul took the team unbeaten by 233 runs and both batsmen returned unbeaten, leading India to a mighty score of 356/2. This was their highest score in ODIs against Pakistan, during which several other records were broken, but these two partnerships show how well Kohli and Rahul can bat together. Spend some time with Rahul too. The guy kept the wicket for 50 overs and had less than an hour to go out and save India from blushing. Like Kohli, Rahul revealed that he was tired but the overall performance let him down.
“Tired. I won’t lie,” Rahul said when Kohli asked him how his body was feeling. “You know how it was. The only chat after, I think, 50-70 sets of partnership was, “Let’s save energy, let’s not run after twos, but yes, once we get into the gap, the body and instincts take over and you’re done running.” It was a tough day, I’m glad we could start our World Cup journey with a good victory.
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