Champions Trophy 2017 June 17, 2017

De Villiers lauds 'consummate surgeon' Kohli

ESPNcricinfo staff
South Africa captain AB de Villers shares his thoughts on the talent and hard work that has helped Virat Kohli evolve into 'the very model of a calm, clinical and confident professional cricketer'

AB de Villers has had to contend with a familiar South African script at the ongoing edition of the Champions Trophy, but his side's early exit hasn't kept him from praising his Indian counterpart and Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli ahead of India's final against Pakistan on Sunday. In a column for the BBC, de Villiers offers insight into Kohli's perseverance, ability to cope with pressure, and work ethic as captain.

There were occasions earlier in his career when his determination to succeed spilled over into outbursts anger and volatility on the field, but such incidents are rare now. He has evolved into the very model of a calm, clinical and confident professional cricketer, seemingly in control of every situation.

Intense and serious in matches and at practice, he retains the invaluable ability to switch off from the game, relaxing, laughing and joking at every opportunity.

He enjoys calling people by playful nicknames and he can find humour in almost every situation, even when we are spending hour after hour at another photo shoot, waiting for the photographer to be ready, then being told how and where to pose, then waiting some more, then being told we have to start the process all over again.

While some of his team-mates are getting frustrated and struggling to be patient and composed, Virat will find something funny and deftly defuse the situation.

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  • SupportTestCricket on June 17, 2017, 10:11 GMT

    It is always a great credit when fellow professionals and opponents praise your work ethics, talent and the way you improve your personality. Kohli's legions of fans will keep increasing and a day will come when they will outnumber the fans the greats of the recent past have had. The best part of the praise and positive comments made about Kohli's talent by players like ABD and others is that it comes from their hearts. Fans may have their favorites and may overlook weaknesses of their idols but fellow professionals know what they are talking about. May God bless Kohli and help him attain higher honors and bring more laurels to our country.

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