'We gave Virat Kohli the chance to flourish and look where he is today' - Krishnamachari Srikkanth
Srikkanth headed the panel of selectors that picked up the gems that won the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup.
In 2011, the Indian team picked by Srikkanth and his team of selectors had won the 50 over ICC Cricket World Cup in 2011. The tournament was also the one in which the world saw the first glimpses of the great player that Virat Kohli would become. In the first match itself, Kohli smashed a century and then kept on contributing throughout the tournament. But, his best performance came in the finals.
At a crunch moment, with Sachin and Sehwag were back in the pavilion, with a mountain of runs still left to be scaled, Kohli showed the first glimpse of his greatness. He forged a partnership with Gautam Gambhir and scored 35 runs himself, before being dismissed to Tillakaratne Dilshan. The score wasn’t huge but the time it came was really important.
Krishnamachari Srikkanth, who headed the panel of selectors that picked up the gems that won the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup, recently made a statement regarding his team’s work in their tenure. The veteran player claimed that it were the ample opportunities provided by him and his team to Virat Kohli in the early days of his career that helped him grow into the player that he is today.
‘When I took over as the chairman in 2008, my dream was to build a team that could win the 2011 World Cup. God has been kind and we had a captain like MS Dhoni, and the win was still one of the best moments of my cricketing journey.’ Srikkanth was also a part of the team that had won the 1983 World Cup. So lifting a trophy once as a player and then as a selector is no mean feat for anyone,” said Srikkanth as quoted by The Times of India.
Krishnamachari Srikkanth lauds Virat Kohli’s journey
Srikkanth also talked about how his team and MS Dhoni backed Virat Kohli in his early days. Having made his debut in 2008, Kohli had been doing pretty well with the white ball but the red cherry always troubled him. But at that time, all that a talented man like Kohli required was backing and support from his team. And, coming to the rescue was Srikkanth, his team and MS Dhoni.
“Let me also remind you, we were the ones who gave Virat Kohli the chance to flourish and look where he is today! So it has all been very satisfying,” said Srikkanth.
They backed him and gave him the time to learn. So, it should be of no surprise to anyone how big he has become in the longest format of the game. Kohli is currently rated to be one of the best in the nosiness and this success of his can be credited to those individuals who believed in him when he was not at his best.